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  CSPAN    Capitol Hill Hearings    News/Business.  

    November 15, 2012
    8:00 - 1:00am EST  

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people have as a result of them delaying the solution for this problem? as a young person today, if you have any knowledge about what is going on in washington you have to be concerned about your future. in terms of their economic future, in terms of your freedom. when the when expectations but y thought were there are not there and they're not going to be there unless we do some things now, you're going to see some disappointed people was an exaggerated behavior. it will not be pretty. it is not just about now. it is about what is coming. look at what is happening in southern europe. we are not that far away from that. there is going to come a time when the costs of borrowing will be so great that we will not be able to borrow.
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we will be forced to austerity. it will be pledged upon us. we ought to be doing that now before that happens rather than when somebody else is telling us what we are going to do. thank you. >> coming up next, attorney general holder releases the details of the $4.5 billion in the bp oil sediment. ed markey reacted to the settlement with bp. that is followed up by president obama touring a hurricane sandy damage in new york. in 2010, the deep water rights and rid explosion was the worst oil spill. -- rig explosion was the worst oil spill. there was a $4.5 billion settlement case.
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this briefing is half an hour. >> good afternoon. i'm here with the assistant attorney general from the justice department and the security and exchange commission of enforce. and head of deep water verizon task force and announcing the latest step forward in our ongoing efforts to achieve justice for those whose lives and livelihoods were impacted by the largest environmental disaster in the history of the united states. and to hold accountable those bore responsibility for this tragedy. today in united states state district court here in louisiana in new orleans the department filed a 14 count information charging b.p. with
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eleven counts of felony manslaughter. one count of felony obstruction of justice and violations of the clean water and migratory bird treaty acts in connection with the deep water horizon oil spill that began in april of 2010. b.p. has agreed to plead guilty to all 14 criminal charges including responsibility for the deaths of eleven people and the events that led to an unprecedented environmental catastrophe. the company has also agreed to pay $4 billion in fines understand penalties. this marks both the largest single criminal fine, more than $1.25 billion and the largest total criminal resolution $4 billion in the history of the united states.
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it's stands as a testament to the hard work countless investigators, attorneys, support staff members and other persons from the deep water horizon task force and state and local agencies who have worked to advance a complex and wide ranging investigation that began even before the oil well was capped. and it constitutes a major environmental achievement of fulfilling a promise that i made here in new orleans along with my colleagues nearly two years ago to engage with our partners and count parts to determine the cause of this disaster, to respond it's consequences and seek justice on behalf of the victims and to enable gulf residents to recover and rebuild. to this end, under the terms of the agreement we announced today about $2.4 billion of the funds will be dedicated to environmental restoration
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preservation and conservation efforts throughout this region including barrier island creation right here in louisiana. an additional $350 million will aid in the development of state of the art oil spill prevention and response technologies, education research and training. and more than $1 billion will go to the united states coast guard trust fund to be available for clean up and compensation for those affected by oil spills in the gulf and throughout the united states. now as part of its guilty plea b.p. will retain a monitor for four years who will oversee safety and maintenance in regard to drilling in the gulf as well as an independent auditor who will conduct annual reviews to ensure compliance with the terms of this agreement. the company will hire an ethics monitor to improve it's its
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conduct and foster robust cooperation with the government. now there can be no question that this historic announcement is a critical step forward and under scores the justice determination to stand with gulf coast communities. in february the settlement tote ling $90 million related to the company's clean water act liability for the deep water horizon disaster. and approximately $45 million of this total will go directly to the gulf in the form of penalties. but our work is far from over. in the trips that my colleagues and that i have made to the gulf coast since the spill, we have seen the damage to lives and businesses as well as to coastal areas and wetlands that
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this tragedy has inflicted. we understand the tremendous cost both economic and environmental that have been associated with this disaster and we've been inspired by the resilience displayed by each gulf coast resident who has been affected. that's why i want to be absolutely clear that today's resolution does not mark the end of our efforts. in fact our criminal investigation remains ongoing and we will continue to follow all credible leads and pursue any charges that are warranted. in addition to the charges filed against b.p. a federal grand jury has also returned an indictment regarding the two highest ranking b.p. supervisors who were on board on the day of the explosion with 23 criminal accounts, including
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eleven counts of manslaughter. eleven counts of involuntary manslaughter and alleged violations of the clean water act. the grand jury has also charged a former b.p. who served as a deputy incident commander and b.p.'s second highest ranking employee at has charged him from hiding information from congress and allegedly lying to law enforcement officials. these and other matters remain open including a separate civil action pending in federal court here in new orleans. we are looking forward to the trial which is scheduled to begin in february of next year which we intend to prove that b.p. was grossly neglect in causing the oil spill. we are seeking civil penalties and a judgment that b.p. is liable for cost and natural resource damages that could
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amount to billions of dollars. but we have been unable to resolve the civil case. we remain as determined as ever to hold those responsibility accountable. in addition to my colleagues we are firmly committed to combating fraud by investigating and prosecuting those who attempt to gain profits at a terrible tragedy. i want to thank the leaders local officials and agency partners and gulf coast residents who have contributed to this work and have made this announcement possible. i'd like to turn this over to the assistant attorney general of the criminal division who will provide additional details about today's action. >> thank you mr. attorney general. in april of 2010 the nation witnessed an unimaginable tragedy when the deep water
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horizon oil rig exploded in the gulf of mexico. eleven people aboard the rig died which and there began and oil began at that point pouring out of the well and on to the sea floor for months causing immense damage to the gulf region and to our ecosystem. the communities here in new orleans and around the gulf have waited patiently for justice to be done. today their wait is over. the deep water horizon task fours filed a 14 count information and guilty plea agreement in new orleans federal court earlier today. it charges b.p. exploration and production with eleven counts of felony manslaughter, violations of environmental laws including the clean water act and the migratory bird act and obstruction of congress. b.p. has agreed to plead guilty to each of those 14 counts and
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to pay the highest criminal fine in united states history. perhaps the greatest tragedy is that the deaths of the eleven men on board the deep water horizon could have been avoided. explosion of the rig was a disaster that resulted from their culture of privileging profit over prudence and we allege that the senior members on board the rig negligently caused the explosion. we hope the acknowledgment of b.p. of its misconduct to plead guilty to eleven counts of felony manslaughter brings some measure of justice to the family members of the people who died on the rig.
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as the oil spill continued b.p. made a tragic situation worse. they began misleading congress and the american people about how much oil was pouring out of the well. as b.p. now admits in responding to congress t company lied and with held documents in order to make it seem as though the oil was spilling, that less damage was being done to the environment than in fact was really occurring. acknowledging those lies, b.p. has agreed to plead guilty to felony obstruction of congress. make no mistake. while the company is guilty, individuals committed these crimes. and we have also unsealed today a 23 count indictment charging b.p.'s two highest ranking supervisors aboard the deep water horizon with manslaughter and violation of the clean water act.
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the indictment charges the two b.p. well site leaders with negligent and gross negligence on 2010. the red flags indicating that the well was not secure both men failed to take appropriate action to prevent the blow out. a separate indictment was also unsealed today charging a former senior b.p. expect sive with obstruction of a investigation and making false statements to law enforcement officials. the indictment alleges that he on behalf of b.p. intentionally under estimated the amount of oil flowing from the well. he allegedly cherry picked pages from documents, with held other documents al together and lied to congress and others to make this spill appear less catastrophic than it was.
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the attorney general stood near here with didn't officials when he first opened this criminal investigation into this terrible oil spill. and promised that we would thoroughly investigate and hold to account those responsibility for this horrible tragedy. today we've begun doing exactly that and tomorrow and in the months to come the deep water horizon task force will continue to tire leslie pursue justice in -- tirelessly pursue justice in this matter. i'd like to personally thank task force director john beretta who has done an absolutely remarkable job in leading this investigation as well as the many fine prosecutors from the criminal division, the environment and natural resources division, the u.s. attorney community and the many talented federal and state
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law enforcement agents who have worked so hard for so long to develop these cases. i would like to thank our colleagues at the securities and exchange commission for their important parallel investigation. with that i would like to turn it over now to my friend and colleague, the director of enforcement at the f.c.c. thank you. >> thank you. i'm director of enforcement at the f.c.c. today we are announcing that b.p. has agreed to pay more than a half billion dollars that it misled investigators about the rate of oil flowing during the deep water horizon disaster. the $525 million penalty represents the third largest civil penalty ever assessed and those funds will be used to compensate harmed investors for losses sustained from this fraud. b.p. misrepresented in f.c.c. filings that the oil spill flow
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rate was estimated to be up to 5,000 barrels of oil per day and that was the current estimate. in fact b.p. was in position of numerous analysis where 5,000 was at the lowest end of the range and those same analysis had upper ranges that were many multiples of 5,000 barrels. according to our complaint b.p. executives made public statements in which they stood behind the flow rate of 5,000 barrels despite an ever growing body of evidence that the estimate was unreasonably low. they dismissed higher estimates reached by third party scientist and they realized it was nearly ten times the amount that b.p. estimated. the spill and concealment of the truth by b.p. caused devastating loss to the victims and
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environment and under mined the truth seeking function of congress. and by hiding the severity of the spill b.p. caused another type of harm that is our focus. harm to the shareholders, to the investing public and market all of which are entitled to transparent and complete and accurate information. the eyes of the world were on b.p. in the spring and summer of 2010, the company had an opportunity to provide accurate disclosure about the facts needed by the public to make informed decision about investment and they chose to mislead the public. that is not what we expect from public companies and their management and it is in times of congress the need for accurate information is most acute. i want to recognize the hard
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work of the f.c.c. staff that conducted this investigation including brian thomas and mat ralph. they are the kind of public servants that americans can be proud of. i want to thank the members of the deep water horizon task force. and i want to thank the leadership of the department of justice, the attorney general, associate attorney general for their leadership in this investigation. thank you. >> we'll be glad to respond to any questions you might have. \[inaudible] >> let me answer that and i'll turn it to the associate attorney general who has been responsible there. we have been in negotiations with b.p. we have not reached a number that i considered satisfactory
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in order to resolve those civil claims that we have. we have a trial set for february. we are planning to vigorously enforce our complaint at the. there is the possibility i suppose that further negotiations could result in a resolution. >> the only thing i would add is just that the attorney general has said repeatedly b.p. is exposed to billions of dollars for the harm that they have caused to gulf coast and the region and we are prepared to take that case to trial and vigorously pursue our civil case. >> is there a difference in the penalty per barrel spilled when you go with a negligent standard or gross negligent standard? >> the distinction is applicable on one side and you have $1100
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per barrel penalty. that gets up to $45e00 per barrel and the standard of law is the difference between violating a duty of care and wanton and reckless conduct. >> what does this settlement mean for the families of those who died and for all of those who have been impacted by this oil spill? >> those lives are irreplaceable and there is nothing we can do to bring those loved ones back. on the other hand this is an indication and perhaps a vindication that we have shown and the company has admitted that as a result of their actions people died there unnecessarily, manslaughter.
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manslaughter has been charged and manslaughter has been pled to. i would hope that would bring some degree of comfort by way of explanation as to why those brave people lost their lives. but at the end of the day, we can't bring them back and i think what we can certainly glean from what has happened here in terms of what we have charged and what the company pled to is those deaths were unnecessary. >> are any of those fines tax deductible? >> they are not. the attorney general was clear that nothing in the criminal settlement could be tax deductible nor an offset to any further civil resolution and that was a very explicit term of the agreement at the request of the attorney general. >> mr. attorney general you said the criminal investigation is ongoing s. that possible that other b.p. employees or executives will be charged in the future.
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ongoingan investigation, that's exactly right. >> this doesn't clear b.p. employees? >> all i will say today is we've resolved it with the company and we've charged three individuals and we have an ongoing investigation. >> mr. holder, we keep hearing about the historic nature of these criminal penalties but we heard the same thing pretty much 7 years ago. it seems like environmental cases of this nature fall like nfl passing records. what deterrent do you expect this to have in the fine you announced today? >> you have to understand the totality of what we announced today. there are penalties historic in nature. a company has pled guilty to criminal felony charges, manslaughter. individuals have been charged as well.
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everything that we are capable of doing in the criminal sphere we have done today. and this is unprecedented both with regard to the amount of money, the fact that a company has been criminally charged and individuals have been charged as well. and as lanny brewer indicated the criminal investigation is ongoing. i hope this sends a clear message to those who would engage in this conduct that there will be a significant penalty to pay and individuals who are engaged in these kind of activities will be held responsible. this is not a corporate plea. individuals have been charged. >> mr. attorney general, do you have anything to say about a senior prosecutor resigning and another demoted because they were making comments about ongoing cases in their offices on the internet. >> i am aware of those charges. but seen the press reports i don't think it would be appropriate for me to comment
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beyond that. >> are you confident that this will change that culture at b.p. that was present at the time of the explosion? >> i am optimistic that it will. i would hope that it will. there is a monitor in place to ensure that in fact that culture does change. i think that the company must be given some credit for the way in which they did respond to the spill in putting together that $20 billion fund and the amounts of money they have expended to fund restoration. so that is an indication that the contract mind set has changed but there are mechanisms in place to ensure that changes something that infuses, that changes a culture the corporation. >> could you address how this guilty plea today affects the ongoing civil litigation and the determination whether this is gross negligence.
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will this be a factor and have you discussed with b.p. whether this money they will be paying under this agreement actually comes out of the pool they are planning to make available? >> so two things. first of all, clearly the session of this plea can't did under stated and it will have an impact on the ongoing civil case we're pursuing. we have in our complaint alleged gloss negligence on the part of b.p. and we feel strongly that we'll be able to prove that case when it's up for trial in february. in terms of the impact on any potential civil recovery, that in part is a determination that a court will make but i think something that the assistant attorney general said is very significant and that is that no part of the $4 billion dollars that b.p. has agreed to pay today will be used to offset any future civil recoveries
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that will go to restoration of the gulf coast. >> \[inaudible] >> those investigations are ongoing so we aren't going to speak about that. >> can you give us a state by state breakdown of how much money goes to the state particularly alabama in this case? >> there is a chart here which kind of ill straits a lot of. this i think the first point and the attorney general made this point one reason this is such a historic result is the vast majority of this recovery is going back to the gulf coast, back to the gulf coast states. as you all know the restore act does not govern criminal penalties so it doesn't govern how our penalties are apportioned in this case but we
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did look to the restore act as a rough guide to apportion what each state would receive under this criminal resolution. so roughly the amount of money is roughly a portioned equally amongst louisiana and the other states. have you significant additional amount of funds which will be devoted to restoration, barrier island creation and mississippi river diversion which you find in the louisiana master plan. >> the way in which this money has been apportioned is not the way we typically apportion money at the end of a case like this. we have tried to be sensitive to that which congress has expressed in the passage of the restore act. i spoke earlier today to senator landrieu and congressman bonner and senator nelson as well to tell them about what we have done with regard to the
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distribution of the moneys in connection with this settlement today. >> if we could have three answers to the same question because the attorney general and the associate wanted to -- you should focus on it is the largest criminal resolution ever and it's his tor rick that all of the money will go to the benefit of the gulf states. that is very unusual for a criminal resolution. it's a criminal fine and punitive. but nonetheless it's going to the different states, particularly to louisiana. >> i want to ask you about how do we get here but in terms of the government what are you doing internally \[inaudible] -- to make sure it doesn't happen again and the oversight funds? >> so one of the important features of this resolution is
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about $350 million will be given to the national academy of sciences in an endowment. and the purpose of that is to improve our oil response, oil spill response, improve drilling safety measures. i think if there is anything we've learned from this great tragedy is we can improve the way we respond to oil spills and drilling safety in the gulf and throughout the country. and $350 million of this resolution goes just to that. >> can you address how the decision was made by the justice department to -- how and when it was made to inform president obama of the investigation of the c.i.a. director. >> with regard to that issue what we did was duct investigation in the way we normally conduct a criminal investigation. we do so in a way that so they can be seen as being done in an
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impartial way which we follow the facts. we do not share outside the justice department, outside the f.b.i. the facts of ongoing investigations. we made the determination as we were going through the matter that there was not a threat to national security. had we made the determination that a threat to national security existed, we would, of course, had made that known to the president and also to the appropriate members on the hill. but as we went through the investigation, looked at the facts and tried to examine them as they developed, we were very -- we felt e very secure in the knowledge that a national security threat did not exist that warranted the sharing of that information with the white house or the hill. but when we got to a point in the investigation and it was very late in the investigation
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after a very critical interview occurred on the friday before we made that disclosure, when we got to that point when we thought it was appropriate to share the information, we did so. >> thank you. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] >> after the announcement, representatives ed markey and henry waxman held a news conference. this is 20 minutes. markey.ongressman ed .'m here with henry waxman
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>> today, bp reached an agreement with the justice department to resolve all criminal claims against it by the united states government regarding the bp deepwater horizon disaster and to pay $4 billion in criminal penalties for these very serious violations of law. bp has pled guilty to 11 felony counts related to the tragic death of 11 men who were working on the deepwater horizon rig. the company also has pled guilty to violations of the clean water act and the migratory bird treaty act. finally, bp has pled guilty to obstruction of congress for lying to me, for lying to henry waxman and the other members of congress about the amount of oil that was flowing out of the well. bp lied to me. they lied to the people of the gulf. they lied to their shareholders. they lied to all americans. there should be no more argument.
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bp is guilty of negligence and grossly negligent conduct that resulted in the 11 deaths. bp is guilty of action that harmed the water and wildlife of the gulf of mexico. bp is guilty of lying to the congress about what they had done and what they knew. in today's plea agreement, bp has admitted that former bp executive david rainey lied to me and to the other members of the house energy and commerce committee subcommittee on energy and environment. a's testified may 4, 2010, at closed-door said giving the briefing on the bp spill. he was apparently responsible for other information
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subsequently provided to the subcommittee about the size of the spill. according to the plea agreement, and i quote, "as part of this plea agreement, bp has admitted that, throughout rainey, it withheld documents and provided false and misleading information in response to the united states house of representatives request for full rate information. among other things, bp admitted that he manipulated internal estimates to understate the amount of oil flowing from the well and withheld data that contradicted bp's public estimate of 5,000 barrels per day. bp has also admitted that, at the same time rainey was preparing his manipulated estimates, bp's internal engineering response teams were using methods that generated
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significantly higher estimates. the flow rate technical group later concluded that more than 60,000 barrels per day were leaking into the gulf during the relevant time, contrary to bp's representations' to congress." at the time that bp was providing congress with a lowball estimate that the flow rate was 5,000 barrels per day, the company apparently had internal information that contradicted that estimate. they knew it could be many multiples greater than that. it turned out to be wrong by at least a factor of 10. these higher estimates were not provided to the congress, nor did bp ever correct the misleading information that they withheld from the subcommittee.
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in the course of their investigation into bp's misdeeds, the fbi and the justice department uncovered internal documents that apparently made it clear that mr. rainey and his colleagues knew that the likely flow rate was significantly higher than what congress had been told. today, i am making public a copy of the documents which i provided to the justice department in response to their request for information regarding our bp investigation. at the time that the disaster was occurring, i said that i thought that bp was either lying about the flow rate or that they were incompetent. today, we have confirmation that bp was both incompetent and that it was lying to the congress. today, the company is taking the first step towards making
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restitution for its misdeeds by pleading guilty to its criminal misconduct regarding the deepwater horizon disaster. i want to commend the attorney general holder and the fbi for their excellent work in bringing the u.s. government's criminal case to a successful resolution. i would urge bp to expeditiously resolve the remaining civil complaints against it, including dropping their misguided attempt to contest the amount of oil that they are responsible for spilling into the gulf of mexico. regarding the allocation of the penalties, the portion of today's settlement directing significant funding for preservation and conservation of natural resources along the
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gulf coast is a significant step forward in repairing the unprecedented environmental harm caused by the bp spill. revenue from future civil penalties will go to the gulf states directly. dedicating these criminal penalties to conservation efforts by the nonprofit fish and wildlife foundation in scientific research conducted by the national academy of sciences -- and scientific research conducted by the national academy of sciences is a critical step in healing our gulf coast. 11 americans died, then bp lied, then they tried to cover it up. they deserve this record picking penalty. let me turn -- record-breaking penalty. let me turn and recognize chairman waxman. >> thank you, ed markey. this justice department announcement today is the largest criminal resolution in the u.s. history, against bp for its role in the 20-2010 deepwater horizon explosion and
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the subsequent bill -- for its role in the 2010 deepwater horizon explosion and the subsequent spill. bp pled guilty to 11 counts of culinary -- felony manslaughter, one count of obstruction -- 11 felony manslaughter counts, one count of obstruction of congress, which we take very seriously as members of congress. violations of the clean water act, the migratory bird treaty act -- the company will pay $4 billion in fines and penalties. in addition to bp's supervisors on board the deepwater horizon the day of the explosion, they were stars with 11 felony counts of -- they were charged with 11 counts of sseamen's -- seamen's manslaughter and other charges.
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our committee worked tirelessly to uncover the truth behind what happened at the deepwater horizon the night of april 20, 2010. our investigation revealed that bp and other companies involved in drilling the macondo well made a series of key decisions that led to this horrible incident. we learned that bp made choices about how to drill and finished well -- and finish the well that significantly increased the chances of a block. these decisions were made to save money and time with little regard to safety. the company put profits ahead of safety. the results were catastrophic. the blowout was preventable. it happened because bp made a series of reckless decisions.
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now, at least there is a measure of accountability. the department of justice has acted aggressively against bp. it is holding the company and key individuals criminally responsible. it is important to remember that this settlement does not and the process -- does not end the process. in february, 2013, a jury will determine the civil penalties that bp will face. i am hopeful that the other companies who played a role in this disaster, such as transocean and halliburton, will also face appropriate penalties for their actions. bp's actions caused the death of 11 men, caused one of the largest ecological disasters our country has ever faced. we will have the decision about
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the civil penalties, but there will be further actions of criminal nature against some of the individuals who have been cited in the information filed by the justice department. we have not yet recovered from this disaster. the families of those who lost their loved ones will never recover. but this is an important step in making sure that bp is held the responsible -- held responsible for its action. i want to commend the work of the chairman. ed markey. he aggressively pursued the statements that were made. when he heard that the amount that they were talking about discharging into the gulf was as slow as it was being presented, he knew right away that it was not accurate. he was able to give the justice department documents that led them to the same conclusion. we need to hold wrongdoers accountable.
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i am pleased that the justice department -- and i commend the attorney general -- are taking the action to hold dp criminally accountable. they are yet to be held -- hold bp criminally accountable. they are yet to be held civilly accountable. and the individuals who gave ms. information to congress or were on board the ship on the night -- gave mis information to congress or were on board the ship on the night of the explosion -- they will have to answer to charges as well. thank you. >> questions? >> you seemed to take this very personally, the fact they were lied to -- the fact you were lied to. do you? >> i was the subcommittee chairman. henry was the chairman of the whole committee. we had an emergency briefing on may 4, asking bp to give us accurate information with regard to the flow rate into the
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gulf. the answer to that question, to a very large extent, determined what the response would be on an emergency basis, to deal with the impact of the spill in the gulf of mexico, the harm that it would do to the ocean, the harm that it would do to see life, the harm -- to sea life, the harm that it would do to all those employed in the gulf. it is now clear that bp was lying to congress. they were deliberately lowballing the number, because liability is directly tied to the number of barrels that flow into the ocean. if they are guilty of ordinary negligence, they would be charged with $1,100 per barrel.
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at 5,000 barrels per day, that is a far smaller fine and 50,000 or 60,000 barrels project -- smaller fine than 50,000 barrels or 60,000 barrels per day. the range of the fine can number from $5 billion to $21 billion. the motive for the law is very clear -- for the lie is very clear, to minimize the overall impact on bp and the other companies in terms of their liability, if in fact that number was the higher number, which it turns out to have been. i personally take it as an insult to congress, but, more importantly, to the american people, because that is who we represent on a daily basis. we are tasked with getting the answers for the american people.
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when you are lying to congress, when you are lying to the energy and commerce committee, you are actually lying to all of those people who are now going to bear the pain of the harm which is being done in the gold state region -- the gulf state region. >> thinking back to the time, did you know at the time -- did you have suspicions at the time that lies were being told? >> yes. we had experts who were telling us that they felt that the flow rate was much higher. we had experts who arrived who said that, if they could gain access to this billc -- to the spill cam, they would be able to determine how large the flow rate was. and determine the flow rate being more -- flow rate by being given more access to all of the different angles that the
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camera made it possible to observe the spill. once that happened, the experts around the country who lack access to that information dramatically -- who had access to that information dramatically increased the damage they thought was being done. it was a exponentially-higher spill rate then they had represented to us on may 4, that they had represented initially in the first week after the spill, and which they had been representing subsequently after the may 4 hearing. the justice department has now obtained documents with the may 4 hearing and subsequently shows that they knew the number was much higher. >> there was a very specific charge of obstruction of congress.
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congressman markey is talking about that particular obstruction of congress. it went beyond that. i sent a letter on june 14 to tony hayward, the chief executive officer of bp, outlining many details that we were able to discern from the documents that were given to our committee of short cuts that they took, of risks that they put in place for a possible blow out, things they should have known to do in a better way. we set that out as well. part of the criminality of bp's actions was not just misleading congress, it was not doing the things they could have done it to avoid the blackout that killed 11 people. that's why the of the individuals on board that night -- two of the individuals on board that night are being held with criminal liability personally.
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that case is not settled. what is being settled here is the payment of a settlement for the criminal liability of bp as a corporation, which includes this obstruction of congress. the essential point is that they are being held accountable. we feel strongly, when we do an investigation, that people be required to tell us the truth. they had a lot of reasons, as ed markey pointed out, to lie. it was in their economic interests july. -- to lie. it was not only misleading congress. it was misleading investors who would buy or sell the stock, who were being misled as to the consequences and the costs that are being imposed by the amount of this bill itself -- of the spill itself. they acted in an irresponsible, reckless way. bp caused a tremendous disaster that cost the lives of 11 people and was probably the
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largest illegal logging -- ecological disaster we have seen in the united states caused by any one corporation. >> how rare is it for someone to be charged with obstruction of congress? how often has that happened in your experience? >> it happens on occasion. it is also rare to have a blowout that could have been prevented happening as it did in the gulf. you have to look at all of this in its entirety, and bp is being held accountable for what they did and did not do, for the recklessness by which they operated, and then their attempt to cover it up in their testimony before the congress of the united states in order to mislead investors and members of congress and the american people. >> so, if, again, if we had
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known from the beginning that it was not 5,000 barrels but 50,000 barrels or 60,000 barrels, that would have affected the amount of dispersants which was needed in order to break up the oil spill. it would have affected the amount of booms and skimmers that were needed in order to collect the oil. it would have affected how we use the top hat and detailed mechanisms that they had put in place initially in order to try to stop the spill. we would have understood the futility of the initial actions and substituted something that would have been much more dramatic. it delayed the response, which was put in place in order to minimize the damage to the economy and the citizens of the gulf of mexico.
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we are still paying that price. it is unusual for a case to be made -- something as serious as this -- it is imperative that criminal action be taken. >> the size of the fine given bp's size -- [indiscernible] >> it is the largest fine in history. it is not the completion of the case because the civil fine could go as high as $21 billion. i am satisfied with the justice department's action and i am also happy that they are going to take this civil action all
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the way to court. i would hope at the end of this the number would be so large that it would serve as a significant deterrent to any other oil company ever again engaging in this level of reckless behavior. >> the opportunity for potentially the settlement -- the government could reach a settlement that could undermine -- [inaudible] >> i am sure he will use good judgment that the size of the settlement is appropriate. i have no criticism for him and how he is conducting his actions. he has not reached a settlement on his other matters, but he has reached a settlement on
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this part, which involves critical matters. i will not second-guess what he might do, but he is sending the matter to court. >> thank you, all. >> coming up tonight, president obama tors a hurricane sandy damage in staten island, new york. later, the senate held a confirmation hearing for the nominees. friday on "washington journal"
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fiscal cliff negotiations. after that, more about the fiscal cliff with democratic congressman of minnesota. he served as a member of the house financial services committee. he will talk what the ongoing commitment concerning the etraeous and allen. >> the discussion has been dominated by two schools of thought. i will briefly describe each of them and how they approach the evidence in the case. to begin with, they insist that both of them murdered for their own personal reason. on the other side, they're in
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here and see is vague about what happened and who was irresponsible. they are absolutely convinced that there is a very large conspiracy and fall within the u.s. government and a massive cover-up. >> this weekend on "american history tv close-" questions remain. lone gunman, the mob, the military -- what happened in dallas? the assassination of john kennedy at 730 p.m. president obama traveled to the new york city area to assess damage from hurricane sandy. on staten island, he visited a recovery center. he was joined by new york city mayor michael bloomberg, homeland security secretary
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janet napolitano, and others. >> good afternoon, on behalf of all new yorkers, mr. president, it is an honor to welcome you here to our city. we are here with our two great senators, and the governor and i wanted to particularly thank you and particularly thank all the volunteers who have worked so hard for the last two weeks. 24/7 a lot of them, they have made all the difference. we are getting out of this. we are getting ahead. we did lose 23 staten islanders here, one was police officer artur, whose funeral i went to. someone unfortunately this city will miss. we are making our ways back. mr. president, thank you particularly for all the help we have gotten from fema, from homeland secretary napolitano who is with us, from human --
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health and human services secretary, and all of your team, craig fugate from fema, the borough president and i and red cross wants to thank everybody here. we have a new program, rapid response. we have a whole bunch of people, electricians, carpenters going out. we are going to get everybody back with electricity. better'll rebuild in a way. thanks to everything that our senators have brought us and the congressman has brought us, this is going to be something we'll look back on and realize we all pull together when nature dealt us a blow. let me introduce somebody that i can't tell you how well we have worked together. the response that we have had is because we have, we combined all the state and city agencies together, governor cuomo has been as cooperative and great and forward thinking as anybody could be. i wanted to personally thank him
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for that. >> thank you very much. first let me thank mayor bloomberg. i'm sure everyone in new york city joins me in thanking the mayor for his leadership, his competence, his diligence, professionalism, his team has been tireless. mr. mayor, we thank all of you very much. we thank all of the first responders, every one of them. we thank the state and local elected officials who are all here today. special thank you to the borough president who has done great job of leadership on the ground. the county president and nassau county and suffolk county, we thank them all. most of all, mr. president, we thank you and we thank your cabinet, especially secretaries napolitano and donovan and craig fugate for their unprecedented federal presence and effort. ouralso like to thank federal officials, senator schumer, senator gillibrand, congressman grimm who is with us today for all their help in securing the necessary funds so
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we can rebuild. 17 days ago on october 29 everything changed for new york. 60 new yorkers lost their lives, tens of thousands saw their homes damaged or destroyed, communities from staten island to long beach to lindenhurst were decimated. 17 days ago we felt a new vulnerability for the first time. we have much to do, there is no doubt. we must provide shelter and support in the short term. we must repair thousands we must redesign for the long term.
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we are new yorkers. we are tough. we will overcome, and we will be the better for it. we take comfort in knowing we are not alone. our hearts have been warmed by the outpouring of support, generosity, and love from across the nation. people from across the country have donated, sent food, and we want to send a hard sell -- a heartfelt thank you to each of you. we want to say thank you to you. you have exemplified the spirit of community.
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you were there for us, you were there for new york and we thank president of the united states. \[applause] thank you so much. i'm going to be relatively brief. i came up here right after the storm and was on the jersey side. and i promised to everybody that i was speaking on behalf of the country when i said we are going to be here until the rebuilding is complete. and i meant it. so i'm going to come back today but i'm also going to be coming back in the future to make sure we have followed through on that commitment. i want to thank the outstanding leadership that's been provided by state and local officials. obviously the governor and mayor have done an outstanding job. thank you so much for your leadership at a time when the
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folks here on this island were obviously going through extraordinarily narrowly difficult times. the people of long island who are going through tough times. across the board we've seen cooperation and a spirit of service. for the first responders who are here, the police officers t firefighters, the e.m.s. folks and sanitation workers who sometimes don't get credit who have done heroic work we are great to feel you because you exemplify what america is all about. crossateful to the red who have been responsive in
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disasters all around the country. and i thank the volunteers. we had some people from canada who had come down to help out. during difficult times like this we're reminded that we're bound together and we have to look out for each other. and a lot of things that seem important, the petty differences melt away and we are bound together and are going to stand together in their hour of need. now more specifically, we are now still in the process of recovery as you can see as you travel around parts of staten island. as we flew over other parts of the city and the region that had been impacted. there is still a lot of clean up to do. people still need emergency help, they still need heat and power and food. they still need a shelter. kids are still trying to figure out where they are going to school. so there is a lot of short term immediate stuff that has to be dealt with and we are going to make sure that we stay here as
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long as people need that immediate help. that is fema's primary task. we'll be coordinating with state and local governments to make sure folks are getting the short term help. but there is going to be some long term rebuilding that is required. you look at this block and you know that this is a community that is deeply rooted. most of the folks i met have been here 20, 30, 50 years. they don't want to see their community uprooted but there has to be a plan for rebuilding. and that plan is going to have to be coordinated and have resources. so i'm going to work with congressional delegation also working with governor christy and the jersey delegation to try to come up with a game plan
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for how we're going to be able to resource the operation. and i'm confident we're going to be able to do it. but everybody has to focus on getting the job done. we're going to have to put some of the turf battles aside and make sure everybody is focused on doing the job as opposed to who is getting the credit or contracts or sometimes that stuff that goes into the rebuilding process. on the federal level because this is going to be such a big job. i wanted to assign one particular person who would be in charge from our perspective because fema runs the recovery process, it doesn't focus on the rebuilding. for that we've got to have all governmental agencies involved. we thought it would be good to have a new yorker who is going to be the point person so our outstanding h.u.d. secretary who used to be the head of the new
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york housing authority so he knows about new york and building is going to be our point person and he's going to work with the mayor, the governor, the county officials to make sure that we come up with a strong, effective plan which and then i'll be working with the members of congress to do everything we can to get the resources needed to rebuild. and i have every confidence that shawn is going to be doing a great job so people should feel some confidence about that. let me close by saying this, i had the opportunity to give some hugs and communicate thoughts and prayers to the moore 23578ly. they lost two young sons during the course of this tragedy.
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and obviously i expressed to them as a father, as a parent my heart break over what they went through. and they are still a little shell shocked. but they came here in part because they wanted to say thank you to all of the people that have been supportive of them. they mentioned kevin of the n.y.p.d. who when they knew that their sons were missing lieutenant gallagher made a point of staying with them and doing everything he could so ultimately they knew what had happened with their boys and were able to recover their bodies and has been with them as a source of support ever sibs since. that is not in the job description of lieutenant gallagher. he did that because that is
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what so many of our first responders do. they go above and beyond the call of duty to respond to people in need. and so i want to give a shout out to lieutenant gallagher but i want to point out the moors want me to mention him. that says something about him as well. and that spirit and sense of togetherness and looking out for one another, that is what is going to carry us through this tragedy. it's not going to be easy. there are going to be some complaints over the next several months. not serve going to be satisfied. i have to tell you the insurance companies and some of the other private sector folks who are involved in this, we need you to show some heart and spirit in helping people rebuild as well. but when i hear the story of the moore's abdomen i hear about lieutenant gallagher that makes me confident we're going to be able to rebuild.
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i'm proud of you new yorkers, you're tough and bounce back. the same is going to be this time out. thank you very much everybody. >> president obama on staten island.
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>> all right, guys, hang in there.
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>> coming up, reaction to the hearings about the september 11 attack of the u.s. consulate in benghazi. and then the confirmation hearing and then eric holder on the deal for the settlement with bp oil. the federal reserve chairman alan greenspan and paul volcker held a forum on the fiscal cliff. we will bring the event to you
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live starting at 8:15 eastern on c-span 2. the house and senate intelligence committee held meetings looking into the libya. next we hear from house select intelligence committee ranking member, diane feinstein and the vice chairman. >> do you still talk with an accent? i think what is important about the hearing is the fact that
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members of the intelligence committee were able to get a lot of facts. i think what really occurred as far as benghazi was concerned, we went through a timeline. we went through representatives , the cia, and the fbi, and i think when members were able to see the time line, the sense was still the same. you have a group of extremists who took it vantage of the situation, and we lost four american lives. there were representatives from outright debt and other groups. -- from al qaeda and other groups. you had individuals with the
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ability to shoot mortars, and i think it shows it was a terrorist attack of sophistication. whether these people gain expertise from being in benghazi or being out there and fighting from that process, that is one thing. we are still focusing on the people who did it. we need to bring them to justice and make sure how this event occurred. so we learn from this so the american people will be protected in the future. >> what is the status of the fbi investigation? >> investigation on what? >> no lead or no witnesses to
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talk to? >> i think we need to have them work with the intelligence committee to attempt to identify who coordinated the attacks, and i think this is an ongoing investigation trying to get the intelligence community to keep focusing on perpetrators. they are at the end of the process. but anything with national security? >> general petraeus is coming tomorrow morning. he is coming tomorrow morning. i think that is a good thing for our country. i think that is a good thing for the public. it is a good thing for general petraeus, who is a well respected individual. there has been a lot of allegations out there.
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one of the areas that was clarified, there was information that the cia was told to stand down when the initial attack occurred, and that is not the case. what happened is when the initial attack occurred, the cia , and theyed commo immediately got ready. under fire they went to the consulate to attempt to protect those americans in the consulate. i do not think there was any push back at all on the issue. >> what questions do you have? what do you hope to learn about benghazi? >> i think the initial issue was when general petraeus first to brief us the day after the attack, he felt this was based
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on the video and was spontaneous, but in that situation, he also said intelligence was involved. we are going to analyze it. all of a sudden, it became a situation meaning that was not the case, meaning there were extremists in the attack and that we needed to focus on that. it was a combination of both. what general petraeus said was that this was spontaneous, it might have been the result of the video that occurred but that there were extremists and terrorists involved, and all those issues became debated, but in the end that is the same conclusion based on the
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information we heard today. >> what do you want to hear tomorrow? >> i want the committee to hear tomorrow, and more importantly, here is another issue. thank goodness the election is over, because it became very public ago. -- very political. what we need to do is address the issue. general petraeus, did your right to -- your resignation have anything to do with the fact you were supposed to testify before congress? i think that will clarify a lot of issues. we have a lot of issues. now we have got to get to the find out what we need to do to protect americans so we do not lose american lives.
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she wasyou satisfied he being honest? >> i think ambassador rice was given the same information we receive from the administration through the intelligence community, and that is the information we receive, and that is the information she testified to. end of story. where else did she get the information? she got the same information congress got initially, and if there is any issue, come to me, not her. >> what kind of material? did you get to watch the video of the attack itself? >> we got a lot of information at the hearing, and we got
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information that clarified a lot of facts. there was a lot of information we spent days looking at. >> could you go into the motive a little bit more? if there were southern personalities. did you have any discussion at all? >> i think that is false information. i had no information any of that occurred whatsoever. you have a group of people we are focusing on. it was the result of what happened. there are people who were
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extremists, and there are qaeda.sts involved in outal the actual attack seemed not well organized. a lot of people wandering around, but the second attack is where they seem to be a lot more sophisticated. if you have that sophistication and the ability to shoot mortars and direct mortars and have direct hits, that is another issue, and i think the second attack was a lot more organized, and that is where there was some expertise. >> are you concerned classified information was -- >> i am always concerned about classified information. at this point, i am not going to discuss that.
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it is an issue that continues to be looked at. >> are you going to ask petraeus about the affair and whether national security was put at risk? >> there are other members who are going to ask questions now. >> is the cia looking into it? is the cia looking into the director? >> the cia has the inspector general. i am sure they will be looking at all the information i sit relates to classified information. -- as it relates to classified information. the petraeus issues started with
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a criminal investigation about cyber harassment. that is how it started. that was a criminal investigation. all of our agencies and the fbi have to make sure they are apolitical. they learn from what happened, so they normally do not go. they come to our committee when it has to do with national security, and that is when they have to make a decision. it would have to come to our committee, the intelligence committee. >> tomorrow, both the house and senate intelligence committees hear from the former cia director, david petraeus.
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he stepped down after admitting to an extramarital affair. >> i am here with our vice chairman, and we have had a lengthy first inquiry. we have virtually all members of the committee there except for one. we saw a real time film put together by nctc of exactly what happened. we had the opportunity to question the dni and acting director of intelligence, the general from the joint chiefs, pat kennedy, the ambassador who heads security aspects of the state department. i am not going to tell you what
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questions are asked or what answers were given. this is just a first step in the inquiry. we will meet with former director petraeus in the morning, and we will resume when we come back with another two full hearings, and then we anticipate we will have a public hearing, and at that time make our findings that can be classified released. i think it was a good hearing. i think it gave us an idea of future areas to question, and we will continue to do so and plow through this until we believe we have enough information to make some findings. lax to things i take away is there were mistakes made. we know there were mistakes
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made, and we have got to learn from that. our leadership asked tough questions of our witnesses, and we are going to continue to do that. what was highlighted was professionalism of our men and women in the intelligence committee who were involved here as well as the state department. there were some heroic acts that took place. that does not minimize the fact that we lost four americans, and at the end of today our committee is going to get to the bottom of this, and we are going to do it in a classified way to the extent we need to. at the end of the day we are going to have a public hearing were the american people are going to have the opportunity to see questions asked and get answers to the questions they
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have asked since september 11. >> i would like to expand on something the vice chairman said. this is a difficult area of the world. people who participate in the intelligence services who cover this area of the world have great difficulty. it is a different language. it is a different dialect. the countries are troubled from within. there is a great deal of instability. it is a precipitous situation, and on behalf of the whole community, i want to thank you. it is i huge community doing the best weekend. -- the best weekend. it is a whole new world and an extraordinarily difficult one.
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as the vice chair said, we very much appreciate your service. it is very easy to criticize. it is very difficult to been out there. >> can you characterize the films you saw? can you tell us when the intelligence community got their hands on that film? >> i cannot help you with the actual time line this was put together. the film was a composite from a number of sources. it is real time. it does begin before the incident started, and it goes before the incident. i do not think i should say any more at this time. >> can you see ambassador
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stevens in it seventh? -- in its in? >> what did you hope to get from general petraeus that you could not get today? >> director petraeus went to tripoli. he interviewed many people who were involved, so the opportunity to get his views are very important. this is not to criticize anybody today. we have a good back-and-forth, and it was not always the easiest thing for everybody who was testifying, but we learned a great deal. >> but was director petraeus involved around the hours of the
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attack? >> i do not know, and that is one thing we will try to figure out. >> when they started an investigation, were you aware of this investigation, and what is your reaction? >> i am not going to comment. the investigation is going on, and the importance of this hearing is benghazi. we are not going into the inspector general or anything else. this is benghazi. >> they did not conduct that. >> we know that is taking place. >> does it question some of the
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talking points? >> i know you would not want me to answer a question when we have three additional hearings to flesh it out. i am not trying to avoid it. i do not think i have all the information we need. one of the things i did not want to do was give a real opinion or analysis because they do not have all the facts. we are fact finding. >> in a complex scenario like this, you cannot get the questions answered in one hearing. that is why we have two already set, and we know there will be one after that. >> senator, did the cia asked for backup in the region?
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did anybody ask for that? >> we have very good testimony on what assets are there and what assets are not there, and i would like to leave it at that. let me thank all of you. hopefully you have thick soles and there is carpet. i know it has been a long wait and we are disappointing, but is what it is. thank you very much. >> tomorrow the house and senate intelligence committee hear from david petraeus. now he will testify one week after admitting to an extramarital affair. >> roll call joins us.
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what more do lawmakers want to know about the attacks on the consulate in benghazi? >> if lawmakers are trying to piece together information, they are dealing with the intelligence community, the state department, and they want to hear from the defense department. it is little bit of a puzzle. they are trying to figure out what each agency was doing when the lead up to the attack, so it was the intelligence community's turn to testify before the committee, to talk about the intelligence they had before the attack on september 11 and how they gained intelligence about what happened and why it was so confused in the way it was explained to the american people and congress. >> what specific things has the
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administration said about the response that has not been adequate enough? >> you hit -- you hear different things from democrats and republicans. republicans are critical. they believed the obama administration should have known right away this was not as spontaneous attack. they want to know who knew what, when. did the president know about the attack? when did his national security team know about the attack? there were people in tripoli and libya with the state department saying there was not enough security concerns because of some of the things going on in libya at the time. good >> the senators made remarks about you in ambassador susan rice.
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what did they say? >> basically, they do not trust her. they think she should have known better. it looked to be a spontaneous response. they think she should have known it was clear there wasn't organized element common -- they think it is clear there was an organized element. the white house is saying, and today we heard from a democrat who said the intelligence community reaffirmed that was the best information they had at the time. she was repeating the information they provided her. now those intelligence committees, they will hear from david petraeus. what do they want to know from
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former director petraeus? >> they said this was going to be specifically about benghazi. there is not going to be anything about this other investigation. this is about what sort of information he had as the cia director about the threat on the ground before the attack and why the information that was coming back to washington was so confusing. they want to know what sort of intelligence they were getting and why he made a mistake. >> what are you looking for in the coming weeks as the investigation goes forward? >> it is the partisan -- i think as the partisanship dies down and they start to dig down on deeper issues. there are some questions about how the state department goes
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forward if it wants to keep diplomats on the ground. in north africa that is a changing area. there is a changing security environment. there are some broader issues. we need to see if they dig into those issues. >> we appreciate your joining us. >> the senate armed services committee heard from president obama's nominee to lead the war in afghanistan. he is currently the second highest ranking officer in the marine corps and will grow place region will replace john allen.
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-- the second highest ranking officer in the marine corps and will replace john allen. this is two and a half hours. >> good morning, everybody. to be the next commander of the international security assistance force. this morning's hearing was originally scheduled to include the nomination of john allen to be commander of the u.s.- european command and supreme allied commander. general allan holds the position for which general done for is
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nominated. the department of defense request the nomination be put on hold pending a general review. we have agreed and hope the review can be completed properly. he brings a distinguished military career with over 35 years of military service. now he has commanded combat forces in iraq. we thank you for your many years of service and for your willingness to once again answer the call to serve this nation. let me extend thanks to your family, whose support is so essential. i will invite you to introduce your wife and any family members or friends who may be here with you this morning when you make your opening remarks. today's hearing comes at an
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important time and follows a string of negative reports in the media over the last few months that have raised questions about various aspects of the campaign and the performance of afghan security forces. we hope general comfort can provide a broader picture of our goals in afghanistan, the progress of building security forces, what the prospects are in terms of transition to afghan control, and what steps leaders are taking to address and mitigates the insider threat. the recent insider attacks by afghan security forces and impersonators' against u.s. and coalition forces threatens the essential trust between forces and our afghan partners. at the same time, according to data, the number of enemy- initiated attacks over the last
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three months is down 5% compared to a year ago. if confirmed, the general done furred would assume command as afghanistan enters a critical phase. getting afghan security forces in the lead continues to be the key to success of the afghanistan mission. afghan security forces are moving into the security lead in designated areas around the country as coalition forces stepped back into a supporting role. the areas under afghan security lead now cover approximately 75% of the afghan population. afghan security forces will have primary responsibility for security throughout afghanistan was the transition process is completed next summer.
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forces will continue to provide support, including combat support if necessary until the end of 2014. afghan security forces have shown they are willing to fight, and the afghan people want to have their own forces keeping their communities secure. a key element of this transition, which general done furred -- dunford will be overseeing it is the shift from having similar units to a security force assistance mission. in that nation, officers form security forces assistant teams, which are embedded in small units as the advisers within afghan forces to build
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capability even as they continue to move into the lead for combat operations. he will be responsible if confirmed for implementing the president's decision for the drawback of forces on afghanistan during the next two years to post 2014 levels. a milestone was achieved with the drawdown of u.s. forces to the 68,000 level and the completion of the withdrawal of the u.s. search force. secretary panetta said earlier that general allan and the white house are in the process of discussing options for the u.s. entering presence after 2014. the process secretary panetta hopes will be completed in the next few weeks.
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secretary panetta stressed the u.s. and during presence -- enduring presence will be based on missions like counterterrorism, advising afghan forces, and providing important enabling capabilities. we would like to hear about the pace of the drawdown of u.s. forces from the current 68,000 true colonial -- troop level to the level of our enduring forces after 2014. we expect a steady pace as the president said, or you anticipate the pace remaining at 68,000 through next year's fighting season and dropping rapidly some time thereafter. finally, the united states and afghanistan have begun an agreement as required by the bilateral enduring strategic
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initiative. they will provide necessary protections for u.s. troops deployed to afghanistan after 2014, and we have been interested in your thoughts on the importance in signalling to afghanistan and its neighbors that the u.s.-afghanistan partnership will be an enduring contribution to regional stability, and we will address what you see as the u.s. red lines in those negotiations, so we look forward to your testimony, and i now call on senator mccain. >> thank you, and let me thank our distinguished witness for joining us and for many years of impressive service. let me start by saying a word about general john allen, our commander in afghanistan who we
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inspected region be expected to testify -- our commander in afghanistan who we expected to testify. i continue to believe general allen is one of our best military leaders, and i continue to have confidence in his ability to lead the war in afghanistan as well as to serve in the post to which he has now been nominated. i am grateful for your willingness to except his nomination to served in the international security force in afghanistan, but i also believe if you are confirmed, you will have a difficult road ahead of you. i think our mission is at a serious and troubling crossroads, and much of the recent reporting is worrisome. unfortunately, over the past few months, our enemies have been
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successful in carrying out insider attacks that have killed and wounded many american and afghan troops. it is hard to overstate the damage these kinds of attacks due to the morale of our troops and to our broader mission of supporting the growth and professional was asian of afghan forces. it is hard for our troops to work with their afghan partners when they have reason to distrust some among them. while i support the decision to suspend many of these partnering efforts, it is harmful and nonetheless. we are seeing more reports of declining security in , including what was once one of the safest in the country. hawkeye is working to reestablish safe havens in afghan -- al qaeda is working to
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establish safe havens. a small unit of taliban operatives thought their way into helmand province and managed to destroy six carrier aircraft and a total loss of $200 million. two marines were killed in that attack, including to the marine aviator who lost his life after running to the fight and briefly fighting heavily armed insurgents with only his sidearm. is growing insecurity is heightening other factions in afghanistan, which could portend a renewal of civil conduct. they reported that the powerful
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warlord, who is responsible for some of the worst violence, is calling on his supporters to rearm and prepare for resumption of conflict against the caliban -- the taliban. these were echoed by another powerful warlord, who stated if the afghan security forces are not able to wage this war, we call on them all of these are compounded by what we face, a corruption and ineffectiveness, a safe haven for other insurgent groups that exist in pakistan and which continue to go unaddressed or worse. none of these developments should be surprising. they can all be traced to the
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fundamental doubt of american resolve in this conflict, i doubt that is shared with our friends and enemies alike in the region. the repeated emphasis on withdrawal without laying out what would constitute a successful and sustainable transition has only fed the ball leaves the united states is committed to getting out regardless of conditions on the ground. this has encouraged those in the region to hedge their bets, increases the worst instincts of the afghan government and increases our return to civil conduct in their absence. our mission is at a crossroads, and we can go down one of two paths. the first is implementing aggressive cuts before 2014 and
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then leaving a presence of supporting forces but is not equal to the task they need to perform is a new security agreement is concluded at all. this would constitute a fighter, a place are necessary -- place an unnecessary risk, and i cannot give it support. there is another path. we could withdraw until 2014 to give maximum flexibility to achieve our goals. furthermore, we could conclude a security agreement with the afghan government that would maintain sufficient numbers of u.s. forces that would perform the task that continue to be essential beyond 2014, counterterrorism, and training of afghan forces. both of these could find the basis of a political strategy to
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foster better governance, better cooperation from countries in the region, and ultimately negotiate terms that are favorable to our afghan allies and us. if confirmed, yours will be a key voice to shaping these conditions. i hope you can increase our chances of success. i hope you will speak truth to power and resist the kind of precipitous withdrawal of support for afghanistan that would be a sure recipe for failure. >> thank you, and general, let's turn to you. >> thank you for the opportunity
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to appear today. joining me today is my wife ellen. i am fortunate to have her support. she is a great mother to our children and also serves as a tireless advocate for military families. she is the most tireless member of our family. due to your leadership, our young men and women in harm's way have been well trained. their performance reflects that support. we know that members of the al qaeda were almost 3000 innocent people. we know attacks were planned in afghanistan with support of the taliban.
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they have responded with extraordinary commitment and sacrifice to deny safe haven of al qaeda in afghanistan. as a result of our shared sacrifice and commitment, our goals are within reach. we will complete the transition to afghan security lead and set the conditions for the afghan people. i recognize much work remains to be done. if confirmed, i look forward to working to overcome the challenges and make sure our shared sacrifices matter.
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i will do all i can to ensure they have the wherewithal to accomplish the mission and return to their families. >> thank you very much, general. we have a standard set of questions, which i know are here somewhere. we ask of our nominees and let me now ask of you, you adhere to applicable laws regarding conflicts of interest? >> i have. >> do you agree to give your personal views even if they differ from the administration in power? >> i do. >> take any actions which would appear to -- the outcome of the confirmation process? >> i have not. will you ensure your staff
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conforms with deadlines? >> i will, chairman. >> will you cooperate in providing witnesses and briefs in response to requests? >> i will. >> will the witnesses be protected from their testimony? >> they will, chairman. >> do you agree if confirmed to appear and testify upon request before this committee? >> i do. >> do you agree to provide documents and copies of electronic form s of communication in a timely manner when requested by a committee or consulting with the committee with regard to the basis of any good faith or denial of providing such documents? >> i do, chairman. >> thank you. let's start with a seven-minute first round, if that is ok. >> one of the keys to success in
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afghanistan is building the size and capacity to have afghan security forces. it calls for them to reach 352,000 or called to reach 352,000 by october of this year, although it has been reported recently that the schedule for the building of those forces slipped by a few months. do you know where that is? >> chairman, i do. all of the individuals have been recruited. not all the individuals have been trained and my expectation is the training will be complete in early 2013. >> senator graham and i have -- i think others on the committee have urged a retention of a large afghan army and security forces and that it not be
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reduced to the 230,000 noddle which has been apparently adopted for starting in i believe 2015, which was adopted at the nato chicago summit. we really feel that this is a very good investment of dollars and it's a heck of a lot better than having a larger number of american troops there. and even though there is obviously a greater cost to us and our allies for helping to maintain that force at the larger level of 352,000, instead of after a few years reducing that number to 230,000, nonetheless, we are very concerned about that model. we believe that it's based on prudgeses about what preassumptions about what the security conditions will be years from now. would you assure us that in
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making any recommendations on the future size of the afghan security forces, that you will provide your best military judgment independent of the affordability considerations? >> chairman, i would. i'm aware the current size and the timeline for the drawdown of the afghan security forces was based on the analysis done a couple of years ago and if i'm confirmed, one of the first things i will do is revisit the assumptions associated with that plan and ensure that we maintain the capabilities and capacities so they can make their security requirements post 2014. >> thank you. what is your assessment of the afghan security forces, particularly in those areas where they have moved into the lead for providing security? >> chairman, i actually came back from my recent visit encouraged by the capability of the afghan security forces.
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i can my first visit in 2008 at the time we had 10 coalition members for every member of the afghan security forces and there had been very little training and very poor equipment. on my recent visit, i was encouraged that we actually had core level operations in regional command south planned and executed by the afghans alone. the afghans have the capability with the support we're providing to provide security. 66% to have after can population is currently secured. they are secured by afghan security forces and i believe based on a trajectory of development of the afghans since we have started this effort through 2014 and with the assumption i make post 2014, with the level of commitment we will be able to continue to provide and i believe the afghan security forces will be able to meet the requirements in
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afghanistan. >> the president -- our president has indicated that he expects that the drawdown is going to occur at a steady pace. is that your understanding of what his statement was? and what is your own belief as to that issue? >> chairman, i think if i'm confirmed, what i need to do is make an assessment of the capabilities and capacities that we'll maintain over the next two years such that they meet our objectives. first we need to have necessary security to meet milestone 2013. this coming summer we would troigs full security lead by the after gans and second we need to set the proper conditions for successful elections in 2014 and finally we need to ensure we have the proper forces to smoothly transition into
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december, 2014. i'll look at the strength of the enemy and the capabilities and capacities of the afghan security forces and judge the capacities of the coalition forces and then make a recommendation on what our force contribution ought to be between now and 2014 and beyond as we go into the decade of transformation. >> ok. the afghan people apparently continue to have a very high -- level of confidence in the afghan national army, with 93%, according to the polls saying that they have a fair amount or a great deal of confidence in the army and indeed the confidence is even grown in the afghan national police with 82% of the afghan people according to those polls expressing some level of confidence in them. do you believe that those numbers and percentages and polls are accurate when it finds that a significant majority of the afghan people have high
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confidence or a reasonable level of confidence in the afghan national army and in the national police? >> chairman, i do not have a sense for the methodology that was used to develop those statistics and if i'm confirmed, it would be an area that i would look deeply into. >> all right. earlier this week, it was reported that afghans energy and water minister, mr. khan called for militias in afghanistan to rearm and take up the defense of the country. this would indicate a lack of confidence in the afghan national security forces and suggesting that he would rebuild his militia forces, mr. khan has raised tensions.
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threatening to weaken support and increasing the risk of civil war. i'm wondering, can you give us your assessment of mr. kahn's statements and the challenges that we are -- militias would pose to political stability and to plans for the transition of full security responsibility to the afghan national security forces? >> chairman, those militias would absolutely have an adverse effect on stability. i think what is necessary now, you alluded to a lack of confidence. senator mccain also alluded to that. i think what is necessary now is we have a clear and compelling narrative of commitment from our country and our partner of nations and their capitals and the afghan government. that needs to be consistent. that's something i think we need to work on here over the next couple of months to address those issues like the one you referred to like militias. >> thank you very much.
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senator mccain? >> chairman, i would ask senator inhofe to make a brief comment. he has responsibilities on another committee. >> thank you. >> hallelujah. >> you're supposed to be there too. >> thank you, senator mccain. i do have to get up to that committee. i do appreciate it. let me just ask two short questions if i might. i want to get on record in agreeing with the comments senator mccain made about general allen. secondly, in response to a written question, general, do you agree the following recovery of 33,000 u.s. forces in afghanistan, further reductions should continue at a steady pace through 2014? your response was i agree that
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there will be further troop reductions through 2014 but the pace of the withdrawal over the next 25 months would depend on several factors. one of this is the readiness. we had a hearing on may 10 and you testified at that hearing. i have always considered you to be one of the top individuals understanding and evaluating training and you and i have talked about this before. the experiences that we have had in watching the training that has taken place with the afghan national security forces, specifically in kabul, military training center, which i have been to several times. i think most of the people on the panel have. would you give us an evaluation of the level of training? that is what is going to depend on a lot of the rate of withdrawal in my opinion. or should, anyway. >> senator, i did have limited opportunity on my recent trip once again to see the training that was ongoing in afghanistan. i am, as you are encouraged by what nato training mission
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afghanistan is doing to enhance the training of the afghan security forces. from my perspective, the true test of our train is the performance of the afghans. as i mentioned a minute ago, i really believe over the last 18 months, their performance has been significantly improved as a result of the training being provide. >> i appreciate that. the second two things i would like to ask you for the record, one would be, you know, it has been a year now, 2011, when the international forces in afghanistan seized a shipment of 48 rockets from iran. i think they are still denying those were iranian rockets that are sent to the -- and i would like to know for the record, the current level of iranian activity in afghanistan and perhaps somebody else will be asking this during the course of this meeting and then one of the
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questions i asked in my office, the attacks if, you could respond for the record on some of our conversations concerning that and your concern about that for the future. would you to that for us? >> defensively that, senator. >> thank you, plch. -- mr. chairman. >> senator levin, the chairman had to leave for a moment and asked me to go ahead with my question. general dunford, thanks for your extraordinary record of service and thanks for your willingness to take on this critical leadership position at this really important time. this hearing happens to take place on the same day that u.s. and afghan officials are meeting for the first time to begin negotiations for a bilateral security agreement under which we would agree to keep some number of forces and presence
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associated in afghanistan after 2014. we spoke about this when you were good enough to visit my office this week and i would like to give you an opportunity to speak about it here. it may seem that the immediate decisions about drawdown and support of a.n.s. are very important. they are very important. i think there is maybe a value to jumping ahead and then coming back, because i do think what we begin to do with this bilateral security agreement, whether as well a presence in afghanistan after 2014 or what it will be will affect what happens before then. so let me ask you how important is it in your view, for the u.s. to conclude an agreement with the afghan government to, keep some military presence, troops,
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etc., in afghanistan, after 2014 and why? >> senator, thank you. i think first and foremost, a bilateral security agreement will be a clear message of commitment for our long-term strategic partnership. we signed it this past may. technical details associated with implementing that agreement. what has been raised on a couple of occasions this morning is the lack of understanding of that commitment, in some cases the lack of confidence that we are committed to the long-term. i believe that the bilateral security agreement will have some -- will create momentum on a strategic side. i think it will be a clear message both of u.s. presence but i also would expect our coalition partners, once the bilateral agreement is signed by the u.s. will also look to affect the agreement with the afghans as well. >> ok. so let me ask you this question.
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do you think that one of the effects -- signing a bilateral security agreement with the afghan government -- incidentally, what is your sense of an ideal time frame during which we would reach an agreement on this bilateral security? >> senator, the requirement set forth in the strategic partnership agreement is not more than one year. that agreement was signed back in may. i believe we need to have the bilateral security agreement signed no later than may 2013. >> ok. let's talk about some of the effects signing that agreement, that time frame, do you think it would have any effect on our forces and isaf forces between now and 2014 if we signed the agreement for post 2014?
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>> i believe it would be an effect on our forces indirectly insofar as it supports the narrative of commitment which i believe will support operation conducted on a day-to-day basis. >> is that a question of the morale of our forces or more than that? >> no, i think it is a question of the confidence in the afghan people that would remain. confidence in the afghan national security forces that we will remain. confidence in the capitals of the coalition that we remain and frankly confidence in regional actors as well that rewill remain. i think that is the most important effect. the clear and compelling narrative that not only are we there now but we intend to see this through until transition of 2014 and intend to in accordance with our agreements in chicago and tokyo see through to what needs to follow in 2014. >> that is a very important answer. i particularly appreciate what you said about the effect of our reaching a bilateral security
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agreement with the afghans by may, would have on other capitals in the region and i presume that could begin with islamabad? >> i believe it would have anfect on islamabad. i think pakistan hedges its bets based on what they believe our long-term commitment to the region would be. their calculus would be changed knowing that we will be there beyond 2014 to secure our national objectives. >> right. what other capitals did you have in mind? >> the other capitals i had in mind first and foremost were the 49 capitals of the coalition. i also think the other capitals have that interest, iran, the stans, russia, china, all the countries that have interest in afghanistan. their calculus would be affected
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bu by our signing a bilateral agreement. >> so i think it is a very important answer. i have the same feeling. i think islamabad is the first capital that would be affected by the bilateral agreement. tying some elements of the pakistani government to terrorist groups. they are hedging their bets for what happens the day after we leave. if we're not leaving presumably, they lose that argument. but, you know, there is -- every situation is different. i can't help but relate this to iraq. nobody wanted our discussions with the iraqi government for a presence in iraq after our troops left to fail more than iran did. and in fact, they were working on that. the fact that it did fail and we
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have no continuing presence in iraq i think is part of the reason why iran's influences spread there and so incidentally has al qaeda re-emerged again. i think those are warnings to us about how important it is to do exactly what you have called for, which is to have a good -- much smaller but a real american presence. let me just ask you to talk a bit about -- i would assume you don't want to talk numbers of american troops in afghan after 2014, but what are some of the kinds of -- besides the psychological effect or the message effect that we have talked about sh, what are some of the kinds of actual missions that follow on u.s. presence would have in afghanistan after 2014? >> senator, i would foresee our two main missions bb counterterrorism operations and advise and assist to the afghan national security force which i
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believe is an enduring role continue past september 2014. >> my final question. do you think the afghan government is favor brooklynclined toward a favorably inclined toward a bilateral agreement? >> the afghan government is favorably -- the favor of the agreement. both governments seem to be serious about signing a bilateral security agreement. i'm optimistic they will be able to do that in accordance with the timeline. >> thank you very much. i wish you well. thank you. >> thank you, senator. >> thank you, senator lieberman. senator mccain? >> general, again, we appreciate your willingness to serve. i must say, isn't it true that
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you have received daily briefings and visits to afghanistan and are keeping up with the situation there? >> senator, i have made a recent visit to afghanistan in -- >> but you get daily briefings, i hope? >> i do, senator. >> so you have reached some tentative conclusions. >> i have, senator. >> almost every answer you have given us is well, we're going to do studies and assessments. so i hope you at least have some initial thought it is and impressions as ho how we're going to proceed. will you know what recommendations command in afghanistan has made to washington about the task that u.s. forces may be needed to perform beyond 2014, i'm specifically talking about force levels, whether they are maintaining at 68,000? whether they should be gradually drawn down or stay there until 2014? what is -- you know what those
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recommendations are? >> sir, i have not been included in those conversations. >> that's interesting to me. a guy that is going to take over the command has not even been included in those conversations. do you feel prepared to assume these responsibilities? >> senator, i do feel prepared to assume these responsibilities. >> you have no impressions or ideas as to whether on the troop drawdown issue between now and 2014? >> sir, i think i have an understanding of the framework within which that decision ought to be made? i have an understanding of the most important variables that should be considered. >> so you are a blank slate? do you believe that any strategy in afghanistan can be successful while militants continue to enjoy safe haven in pakistan? >> senator, i think over time, safe haven in pakistan needs to be addressed. >> do you believe the issue of
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corruption, we can succeed with the level of corruption that exists throughout afghanistan? >> i believe it is the most significant strategic challenge to meeting our objectives in afghanistan. >> do you have any thoughts about how we would go at this issue of corruption? >> i do. i have reviewed the framework during which corruption is being addressed at the united states central command and the u.s. embassy in kabul and force assistance. >> do you think it is succeeding? >> i think there has been progress made over the last 18 months and in particular since the tokyo meeting. >> do you believe there has been any progress in the safe haven issue in pakistan? >> it is not apparent to me that there is any progress with the safe haven issue in pakistan. >> if confirmed, will you provide this committee with the recommendations that you would ultimately make through your chain of command with regard to the size and pace of the
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drawdown of u.s. forces from afghanistan? >> i would, senator. >> the reason why i keep raising this issue with you and why i feel so strongly about it is that every time i have been there and talked and had candid conversations with our commanders at literally all levels, they believe that we need to keep the 68,000 there until the 2014 date. and if we start a "steady pace withdrawal" that we will not be able to accomplish a lot of those missions there. if we can't accomplish the mission, i'm not sure why we should stay. and that is something that i think a lot of us have to wrestle with because we're going to start drawing down right away, from the 68,000, which i am -- know that our military leaders believe there is
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absolutely necessary, then i think we need to look at other options. that this attack that destroyed six carrier aircraft, does that concern you? i'm sure it must. but isn't that an example of the brazenness and capabilities that the taliban have? >> senator, i think it does reflect the capabilities that the taliban has. >> and you confident that the afghan forces will be able to stand on their own after 2014 without significant presence from the united states? >> i believe the afghan security forces will require some level of assistance from the united states as well as coalition partners in order to be successful post 2014. >> do you think we're winning the war in afghanistan? >> senator, i think we're making progress, and as i mentioned in my opening remarks, i believe our objectives are achievable. >> do you have any conclusions that you drew from your recent
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trip on the security situation in afghanistan, particularly in southern and eastern afghanistan? >> i do, senator. broadly speaking, one of the statistics i found compelling is that 80% of the violence happening where 20% of the population is and 76% of the population is secured by afghan national security forces. the vast preponderance of violence is taking place outside of populated areas. the taliban have been displaced from the population and i view that as a sign of success. >> do you believe that al qaeda is growing stronger in afghanistan? >> i do not believe so but there is evidence of an al qaeda presence. >> does this recent warlord rearming, ismael khan.
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is that a concern? >> senator, it is. >> well, there i guess three of us here, general, that have been going over there for the last 11 years and we haven't seen the progress that we had hoped would take place and we do see quite often sentiment on the part of afghans and their neighbors that the united states spends most of its time announcing withdrawals, dates for withdrawals rather than recipes for success and some of us, as i say, who have been observing this for a long, long time and made many, many visits and many, many briefings, are deeply concerned. and so i hope that you will, in your assessment, and your
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ability, will take into serious consideration our ability to complete the mission, and that is a stable afghanistan that is able to defend itself over time. and frankly, i'm not sure that's the case today and i am not sure that if we start drawing down immediately, that we may be able to achieve that goal. we have sacrificed a lot, as you know far better than i do, and we are going to want to have an assessment as to whether this mission can actually succeed or not and i thank you for your willingness to serve. i thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you, senator mccain. senator? >> i would like to begin by expressing my strong confidence in general dunford in every
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sense of the word. i have a tremendous respect for his leadership, his integrity and when you look at his bio, i don't think people have really looked at it very closely. the greatest reward in the marine corps for leadership is to give someone command. general dunford is commanded at threecommander at two levels. in addition, he has a master's in government from georgetown university. i have known him for more than 20 years. he is not only well-prepared, but in this difficult and complex assignment, he has this
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commitment to duty that i admire. he has a great respect for the military. he provides unambiguous, direct policy advice. that is what we are going to need as we begin to sort out what direction the country should be moving. i would like to take up where senator lieberman left off in discussing bilateral security agreement. as you know, the president was in afghanistan to sign a strategic partnership agreement. i think it comment was made at the time that this was a binding agreement.
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i have had a problem with the way we have addressed these long-term agreements, beginning with the way they were reached in iraq. in some ways we are paying the price in the way the strategic framework agreement was reached in iraq. i warned at the time that by allowing an executive agreement to determine long-term national policy, excluding a congressional participation is kind of strange in terms of how our systems should be working. the iraqi parliament voted on that strategic worker agreement. we did not have the opportunity to debate it, much less work on it. i was notified by my staff there
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was a conference call from the deputy special representative talking about this agreement. his comment was the agreement will contain no binding commitment, and as a result, no need to formally bring it to the hill. he says they are going to review the agreement. i think whenever you have an agreement that is going to propel action, we should have direct congressional involvement. this is a long term message for the relationship between the countries. i would like to raise it for the concerns of my colleagues.
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this is something we should be resolved in. my great concern was the metric for success was going to be largely determined by two factors we cannot control. the next one is the growth of the police force to a size that had never been achieved in afghanistan's history.
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>> i believe the most significant strategic even that is going to occur between now and 2014, without successful elections, i am concerned the additional contributions for development and security forces will be there, and those are critical for our ability to meet our objectives post 2014. the other reason they are so important is the legitimacy of those elections are going to have a lot to do with their willingness to support the afghan government and not the taliban. i could not agree more that the government and adequate elections are a precondition for success.
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with regard to the afghan national security forces, i do not know what afghanistan will be able to sustain past 2014. i do believe we can sustain 314,000 through 2014, and i think it is important we look at sustaining the right amount of force after 2014 as well, but after the resources are no longer available, and at some point when u.s. resources are not available, i think the national security forces will have the right size to meet their security requirements within their resources. >> we tend to characterize the challenge as taliban verses the present government, yet when i go back to the bond agreements where the structure was agreed
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to, there was a lot of concern the structure itself may not fit the history of this country and the longer-term. we may end up seeing the need for a different structure, a devolution away from a central government before we can have stability. >> i think one of the most important aspects is whatever we come up with past to be sustainable over time, and that will require a uniquely afghan solution. our primary role is to provide support to the afghan security forces. our primary role is to support afghans as they conduct actions that will be seen as legitimate
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for afghans. i do believe they need to take into account the requirements and the desires of the afghan people to be sustainable over time. >> thank you. >> thank you for your distinguished service to our country, and i appreciate your tremendous qualifications for this position, and i give the best to your family as well. i want to ask a straightforward question. many of my constituents have grown more wary, and what i would like you to tell us is why does the outcome in afghanistan matter to americans, and what are the consequences if we were
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to make the decision we are going to pull out right now? can you help us with that? i want to understand because we have made tremendous sacrifice of our men and women in uniform. >> thank you for that question. that is the most important question we should be able to answer clearly. in the wake of 9-11, we went to afghanistan. that area is still writes for sanctuary for al qaeda. and we also wanted to establish a government in afghanistan and insure the taliban were no longer in a position to harbor. those remain. they denied the ability to
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overthrow the government. now the mission is those gains and the gains we will make as a result of the elections in 2014 will insure the afghans can do what we have been doing over the past decade. i would be concerned if we did not complete a mission, we would have an area in afghanistan where all kinda -- al qaeda can continue to operate. we will have a significant national interest as well. i think it will be bad in providing sanctuary and will have a destabilizing of fact on the region. -- destabilizing effect on the region. >> in looking at the conflict in
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iraq and our failure to be able to negotiate an agreement, what lessons do you take from the experience in terms of being able to negotiate a similar agreement, and in addition to that, what lessons do you take from a rack cabinets -- from iraq? when we look at iraq, we have a detainee who is a hezbollah leader involved with the americans whom the iraqis are going to let go. we have individuals in custody in afghanistan and that may be third-party nationals and others too dangerous to release, and i see that as an issue that needs to be negotiated going forward to make sure we are not releasing terrorists out into the open.
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>> we need to allow sufficient time for negotiations. the strategic partnership said that the time line for having an agreement signed in one year, which was still six months ahead of our plan for full transition to afghan control, so i think we have internalized the lesson learned. we have sufficient time to get the agreement signed, which is so important. they have started later than they started in afghanistan. the other important lesson is the functions performed by the national security force in afghanistan must eventually be sent to other organizations where they can be formed on a
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regular basis. i know there is work being done as well as in washington to identify those functions and inshore over the last 25 months we have a deliberate way of passing those off so we have continuity. i think at the strategic level those are two important lessons. with regard to the individuals that need to be detained, i looked at those as the protection issue. there are clearly individuals who are absolutely irreconcilable, and from my perspective, those need to be locked up for the safety and security of our forces and the safety and security of the american people after we come
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out of afghanistan. >> the administration has taken a position we are not going to add anyone else to guantanamo bay. we could assure they would not be released. i think that is one of the challenges we face in iraq. would you agree? >> it is one of the challenges we face. i know the administration is not working on the framework in which it can be addressed. >> i think it has to be. we cannot keep releasing people like that to have the blood of americans on their hands. i think this is an incredibly important issue in terms of protection of the american people and our allies. the wartime contract in commission found that $60 billion in contracts in funds had been wasted, misspent, or went into the wrong hands as a
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result of iraq -- in iraq and afghanistan. as a result, they introduced provisions to cut through the red tape so you could cut off contract sooner if our taxpayer dollars were getting into the wrong hands or going to insurgents, which did happen. how are those working? what more can we do? can you give us an update? >> thank you for your assistance. that is part of act last year. the general who has the authority has used the authority a great deal over the past year. i understand at least $12 million that might have gone into the hands of the taliban did not because he had the ability to cancel those contracts. i also believe over the past
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year they have changed the organizational contract -- constructs to provide better oversight and to ensure the money we provide achieves the effect desired in terms of growing the capacity of afghanistan. i believe that is a part of the story. i know they are very appreciative of having that authority, and they have used it. >> thank you very much. if there is anything more we can do to make sure the money does not get into the wrong hands, we look forward to working with you on that. >> thank you for being here this morning, and i want to echo a couple of comments that i am
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looking forward to your comments and your tasks. thank you for being here this morning. let me ask you. over 100 of our alaskan national guardsmen have been providing security for the reconstruction team. they are also in the process of redeploying to kandahar. they have done a great job, and i think all of our folks did a great job. i want you to expand a little bit more. how do we continue to have the success i think they did as we start drawing down?
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they have done some great impact over the last year, but how do we ensure that as we start drawing down and making sure the is ready?ce it is like you have been repeating, but i want to expand. >> it is fair to say they have focused on quantity. it is now 352,000 that are recruited in the process of being trained. i think the focus has to be addressing the quality of the national security forces. that indicates improvement in literacy and leadership, and there are a number of enablers the need to be grown in order for afghan national security forces to sustain themselves. those include area light aviation, medical support, fire support.
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i sat through a meeting. now carter is involved with these. he has a meeting with stakeholders to insure they are meeting the requirements to give the afghans what they need. we will continue to address literacy. but we will continue to address requirements to continue to provide professional military education and to have those areas for them to be able to operate. that is our task. our president's post 2014 will be informed by the progress made as a result. >> can i expand on the literacy issue? in order for them to have an
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understand a better enforcement of the rule of law, can you give me an idea of how weekend now increase the literacy rate. it was much higher, but the transition move in a different way. in this case the literacy rate is much lower. i am concerned. good i appreciate what you have said, giving quantity first engine then quality. i am assuming literacy has to be a critical piece of that. >> it is a critical piece. i am aware of the national training mission in afghanistan has a literacy program. that program is that the level to ensure that all the soldiers are exposed to that and that we
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enhance their literacy. there is a more technical aspect of their performance. we prioritize literacy in those areas even greater. i think this is a long-term effort. certainly, this would be an area of particular interest. >> in regards to the drawdown and transition, i am a supporter. i want it done by 2014. i heard a comment earlier. i do not think you have a blank slate. you have a lot of debt. you may not have the details, but you do not earn those stars by just showing up one day. you spend a lot of years understanding what needs to be done. that is why we have one of the best mobile units anywhere. let me ask you, from the
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knowledge you have today, do you think you have all the abilities to insure those transfers of power continue as well as moving the equipment out? all those pieces mechanically you will need to make sure the transition occurs properly? the you think you have all those? >> my initial assessment is we do have all the authorities we need for retrograde. at one of the meetings i sat through general allen's staff brief, and they did not identify any areas where we need additional authorities, but i will certainly come back if i identify gaps to facilitate a redeployment in retrograde, and i would know if one significant thing has happened to assist us me astting our equipment holma
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part of the campaign. as you know, there has been a significant problem over the last several months, and i was very encouraged, but tending the ground lines of communication, it will greatly assist. >> you made a comment, and i want to understand the statement. you said the decade of transformation. that was the phrase you used. do you mean as combat forces are out, there is the next period, or are you talking about what has occurred today? >> thank you for clarifying. there was a framework established in tokyo by our coalition of interested nations. it will begin with the transition that takes place in 2014 common so what i alluded to
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was 2014-2020 ford decade of transformation that will solidify the gains we made in the past 10 years and address the sustainability of governance, security, and development posed 2014. >> my time expired. i know you have certain categories you work within, but in that decade of transformation, has there been some hard numbers attached to what the u.s. commitment would be? if you are unable to answer that, i recognize you may not be able to at this point. can you give a record of where people are starting to estimate what that transition will be like? >> i can take that. it would be the development fees. in tokyo, nations planes to seek
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funds from their governments during the decade of transformation, so the commitment was conditional based on the need of places to go back to their concrescence -- on congress. security forces were identified, so what i can come back to you is the amount of money we projected would be necessary to sustain afghan security forces opposed to 2014 and some sense of who is willing to contribute those resources. >> that is one part of the equation we have, the government and state department. >> that is the tokyo peace, so i will address the chicago peace. >> thank you. >> thank you. one of our members encourage you to always speak truth to power,
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and i have no doubt he will do just that, because my friend and colleague senator joe lieberman told me when you visited him in his office, he asked you what baseball team you supported, and of course, joe is a confirmed this guided the keyspan, and you admitted freely you were of red sox fan, -- is a confirmed misguided yankees fan, and you've admitted freely you were a red sox fan. i commend you even though it was a rough season for the red sox. i do want to turn to a more serious issue. twice you have stated this morning you believe our objectives in afghanistan are achievable, and the primary
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objective since 2009 has been to disrupt and he eventually the ft al qaeda -- and eventually defeat al qaeda and prevent its return. national intelligence estimates, reports from the international crisis group, and the special investigation for afghanistan reconstruction have cast doubts on the ability of the afghan national security forces to consolidate and hold the gains of securities that will be made. these also cast doubt on the likelihood of the afghan government providing good governing and dealing with the
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endemic corruption such that it would enable them to do their job in fighting the insurgency. given the escalation of insider attacks, the sanctuaries that still exist in pakistan, and the level of corruption in the afghan government, why you believe the objections are obtainable? it seems to me the intelligence reports, the lack of progress, the surge in insider attacks paint a bleak picture. >> thank you for asking that question and giving me an opportunity to put those reports in perspective. here is what my reports are
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based on. as you know, five geographical areas were identified to be transition for afghan security control. we have initiated the transition in three of the five. first three, violence has increased. i think it is important to recognize the violence that has taken place is largely out of the populated areas because they have secured the populated areas. the other reason i am optimistic is because when i look at the forces where they were in 2008 and where they are today in 2012, it is a dramatic improvement, so as i look forward to the next 24 months, if we maintain the trajectory into the next 25 months, i
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believe afghan national security forces will be capable of providing security, and i to milestones. this summer, we will go through milestone 2013. at that point, all five geographical areas that i mentioned will be in transition. the afghans will be in the lead at that point. given what i believe to be u.s. support in 2013, i am confident to secure those five geographical areas. they will still need to combat operations to take place. and we will also still be doing the advise and assist mission as we go to a largely assist mission in 2013. the elections in 2014, when i look at the afghan capability combined with what i believe to be resources that we will provide and where the taliban will be in 2014, i project the
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afghans will be able to provide security as well. in addition to the level of violence where it is occurring, it is important to know where there are significant leadership losses. the average age is 10 years younger than it was when the war started 10 years ago. there was significant attrition. we have also seen indications of taliban suffering financial difficulties and being unable to sustain their effort. they did not achieve their objectives. senator, i don't understand the challenges. i recognize what has to happen between now and 2014 to continue to solidify the gains tand make those sustainable.
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and also need to provide some support for post 2014. the important thing is to look at the capabilities of the afghan national security forces. with that support, i believe we will meet our objectives and the afghans will be able to sustain the labevel of purity sustained in 2013. >> you mentioned the overall level has declined and i wonder, mr. chairman, if we could ask for some statistics on that. i have read an alternative analysis that suggests the surge has not been successful in east ern afghanistan and the level of violence in that part of the country has increased. it i understand when you have a
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surge, you will have an increase in violence. but at this stage, i think it would be helpful for us to have a measure of the effectiveness of the surge in reducing violence, particularly to the civilian population. i would hope the chairman would ask for that information. >> let me respond to that request. i have asked for it and i looked at it this morning. it is interesting and supports the general, but i asked for it to be updated. it is a month behind, and we can now get the october and will be able to get the november results, to compare apples to apples this year to last year.
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it is a very important request you are making and i hope that by the end of next week, we will have those statistics updated and i will make them available to everybody. >> i know my time has expired, i just have to express my deep concern about the escalation of green on blue attacks. you say each death has strategic implications and i know that you recognize these attacks are also absolutely devastating to the families of american service members since they are trying to train and help these afghan forces. it is just devastating, and i think these attacks are jeopardized and the willingness of our partners to continue their own mission in
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afghanistan. i guess, for the record, i will ask if you think this escalation threatens the ability for us to continue training and equipping the afghan forces and turning over authority to them. >> it is such an important cancer, i think our colleagues will understand that. >> i will be glad to. the threat is a force protection issue. i can assure you that i will be personally and decisively engaged on the insider threat. i have looked at what isef has done to address the insider threat. i have been impressed by the comprehensive approach that they have taken. the training that takes place
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inside of afghanistan, there has been a significant increase in the number of counterintelligence resources. both inside the coalition and inside of afghanistan. perhaps what is most encouraging to me, it is too early to see if it is the result of our success, as we have implemented these new measures, what is most revealing to me is that the afghan leadership takes this issue seriously. we went through the campaign synchronization office. all of the leaders were there. the afghans recognize this for the threat that it is. in addition to being a force protection issue, it is an issue that can undermine the trust which is the foundation of their
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relationship and affect the will of the coalition, the strategic level to stay there. it is a critical issue, one that needs to be addressed. we should never be complacent, we need to stay out in front of the enemy. as we make adjustments, the enemy will also adjust. that issue will be at the top of my in box and i will be personally and decisively engaged to address it properly. >> let me start by acknowledging your service, you have served with great distinction for many years. i know everybody on the committee, they have acknowledged or service and sacrifice.
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here you sit having carried a load much more than your fair share these last years. we look forward to seeing you in the theater. i wanted to let you know that you have my deepest thanks and services. you might be able to provide us -- the nature of the two wars were different. i know that there were lessons, i would like to hear what you learned. >> senator, thank you for that question.
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the capable security forces are indigenous. all of the lessons that we had, it was a result of our effort to stand up with a capable security forces. we saw that was what happened, we were able to grow capabilities and provide them with the requisite level of support. they were able to take the fight to the enemy. that capability is the mechanism for the insurgency. i think what we take is a recognition is the critical part of our effort over the next few years is to continue the efforts to develop the national security forces. those will be the forces that allow us to be successful in afghanistan. those are the ones that allow the success to be enduring.
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i think that the strategic level, that is what is similar from iraq to afghanistan. >> let me pick up on that line of testimony turned to the alp. last october, that was a real focus of a number of his subordinate commanders. forces are locals, they are more trusted by villagers and community elders. are there lessons learned their? >> i absolutely support the continuation of the local police. what the forces have done, it has been one of the success
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stories over the last 18 months. it might be better for me to share you the perspective of the afghans and the taliban. as i mentioned, the synchronization of afghan leadership, when it was first introduced, there was resistance. during a recent securities synchronization conference, how much faster can they meet the authorized level of local police? there is a full authorization level of 30,000. they very much recognized that this is completely linked to a local leadership, and absolutely successful program. the perspective of the taliban,
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the afghan local police is one of the most significant issues that they have to address. more areas, under the local police, they view that as a very concerning development. i think we view it as a successful program. i would be intent on continuing that program. i think you get some sense for how important that program has been, and how much it can help us meet objectives in 2014. >> i have been in and out of the hearing this morning, i don't know if anybody has asked you about sequestration. i might ask that you give us
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your thoughts on sequestration. if you would submit something for the record, i want to move to let other question. i know we're all very concerned. you mentioned some of the capital's you're watching and i would like to ask you about one more. i know you'll be commuting, making periodic trips. is there any hope of engaging new delhi, and relationship between pakistan, afghanistan, and india? have this point, i don't insight into what the government is doing. i am certainly aware that it will be critical, and if
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confirmed, i suspect i will be involved in that issue. >> speak to the announcement that pakistan will release low- level prisoners at the request of the government. does this suggest we can work towards a negotiated settlement? or do you think that there is no path between the government and the taliban without pakistan? >> i would support any initiative that would bring a political resolution to the conflict in afghanistan. i know that our special representative is working very hard to affect some reconciliation.
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if confirmed, i would be supporting the ambassadors efforts of reconciliation. i don't have a sense for the probability of reconciliation in the near term, but i would look forward to supporting embassador grossman. >> i look forward to seeing you in theater as we bring this war to a successful conclusion. >> i would like to associate myself with senator cain's comments. thank you for being willing to serve. a the chairman and i will get back with the administration and consult with you about our desire to make sure that we understand the value of the 352,000 afghan army for some time to come. the more they can do, the less
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they will need us. i associate myself with that inquiry. i think it is salvageable, but if we don't do things differently, it will not be successful. tripwires. do you agree with me that if the elections go poorly in 2014, that would be a major setback for the future in afghanistan? >> i could not agree with you more. the pledges that were made in tokyo and chicago are conditional. part of those conditions involve addressing the issue of corruption and having successful elections in 2014. i think in order for us to get confidence, legitimate government should be established. security has enabled the
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development of governance. it is fair to say that effective government -- and government is going to be necessary. >> president karzai has indicated that he intends not to run. i would like to say that if he changed his mind and try to seek another term, it would be absolutely devastating for the future of afghanistan. the last card to play by the united states would be security partnership agreement being implemented effectively, robustly, and really the last card to play in terms of maintaining a bright future for afghanistan? >> i think it is a logical extension for the --
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>> the difference between winning and losing? >> i think so. >> they don't have much of an air force, they have f-16's over there? ." >> we will have to address a number of areas. >> they don't have an air force that could do that. attack helicopters, that makes sense, right? an insurance policy for america to make sure that al qaeda does not regroup. intel capability, how many drones? >> not any at this time i'm aware of. >> it is basically more human than it is technical. is that correct?
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>> to my knowledge, yes. >> did you serve and i iraq? >> yes. >> before you make any decisions about what to recommend for the president or this body, take a visit to iraq and to see how the place is playing out. >> i will, senator. >> i want you to go because you fought so hard and it is coming apart. i don't want that to happen to afghanistan. do you agree that you can maintain a robust american military presence in 2014 with a fraction of the troops that we have today? >> absolutely. than korea?ess 1000? >> i do not believe 1000 will be
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enough. >> i know you will advise us wisely. about those troops, would you agree with me that it would be ill-advised to leave one american military member in afghanistan without a status agreement? >> i think we need full protection for those in uniform and have appropriate protections for those civilians that are working over there. >> that has been the norm in the nation's history. is that correct? particularly when you have unstable government? >> that is correct. >> the legal system has a ways to go, but hope springs eternal. as much as i want to get it right and believe that losing will be at national-security disaster for the ages, if they
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insist keeping american soldiers in afghanistan without legal protections as we have afforded the troops, i will not vote for one penny and this is where it will come to an end. >> i understand that, senator. >> are you familiar with the detainee problem? >> that is where i do my reserve, they have done a heck of a job and we are in the position now in the transition phase 43000 + captors that the american military have captured at have been in our detention system transitioning to afghan detention. my point of view is that it is going rather well, but major
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problems i see in the future. my problem is the unwillingness to a administrate. are you aware of what i am talking about? >> yes. >> if you use the afghan criminal code, it would be almost impossible? and that the criminal code really doesn't recognize the difference between a common criminal and an insurgent? >> i do. >> administrative detention similar to what we do should be continued, and would you let them know that if i see an effort to undercut administrative detention and it is catch-and-release, none of us are going to stand for one person that has been caught three or four times going back to the battlefield and killing
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americans again. we respect their sovereignty, would you pass that on? >> to me, it is first and foremost not a legal issue but a force protection issue. we have defined a way to keep those individuals of the battlefield. >> is it possible to lose and have it not be catastrophic? >> i believe that an unstable afghanistan would be a significant risk to the stability of pakistan. >> thank you for your service, i think the president has made a very wise nomination.
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you have one of the most difficult jobs ahead of you. by every compliment, you will continue in that tradition of leadership. the plan, in terms of transition, one of the aspects is the security force and assistance teams that would be at the brigade level and operating with the forces to be the forces and the trainers. can you comment on these teams? it has potential consequences of the blue and green incidents with respect to being able to keep these teams that the
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brigade level. >> we have started the field with the security force assistance teams. the first brigade level organization is currently deployed at this time. all of these commands are in place, and i think it is the next logical step, to migrate the security force assistance teams as we move forward with the relationship. in regard to the insider threat, an initial data that i have had an opportunity to look that would indicate that the closer we are to afghan partners, the safer we are. there are very few incidents associated with those very closely tied in a manner in which the force would be.
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i am optimistic that in addition to the other steps being taken, it will be effective and be aimed at a gator for the insider threat. the data that we have is minimal, but if confirmed, i will pay close attention to that. they also are an editor for the insider threat that we talked about. >> one of the points that you made in your testimony is that the afghan national army has made significant progress, particularly in the last several years, the training effort. the police lag behind in terms of capability, coherence, and
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lacking the governmental infrastructure. the strongest link is the afghan national army. are you conscious of or sensitive to ethnic divisions within that force since they seem to characterize the country? there are always rumors about political leaders in certain towns with their own paramilitary aspirations. can you comment about -- not ethnic divisions? >> in general terms, i am aware of those concerns. they have worked to ensure that both the national army and the police reflect the demographic
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mix of afghanistan, we believe that is important. one particular ethnic group will set the conditions or challenges down the road. that is an area i would pay particular attention to as well. >> one of the major missions you will have as a nato commander is not only to make the transition but also to supervise the retrograde of huge amounts of material and equipment. i presume the amount of exit will be from pakistan. can you comment on where you see us in terms of where you conduct those operations? >> i can. the groundlines of communications are the most
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efficient and inexpensive way to get it home. there are other ways, but it is far too expensive to do air and mutlilti-modal. i am pleased they were signed on the second of november, and we are moving to approve the concept phase. much of the frustrated cargo has started to move. i believe that right now, the situation is pretty good. >> the command is well on its way for the planning of the movement. the equipment is staying? >> i left with a lot of confidence about that during my last visit. i had a chance to spend time with leadership overseeing that. on the visit before this last
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visit, i had a chance to visit where all the equipment is being staged and brought out. i think it is being done now as an integral part of the campaign. it is not just about moving it across the lines of communication, it is about retrograde redeployment. my perspective is that the concept is very well understood. they are well ahead of where they need the in terms of meeting their objectives. >> i know you have been on the ground, have you had contact with other nato commanders? >> i was able to a company secretary panetta for a couple of days, i sat through the bilateral discussions as well as the general session with the defense ministers. i had a chance to meet many of
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the nato leaders. one of the things i will do before assuming command is visit the key capitals of the nato partners and establish the first relationships that will be so important for the next couple of years. >> thank you. thank you for your leadership and a service, we appreciate your willingness stto serve intently on your tour of afghanistan. we spoke yesterday, the day before, and i enjoyed that conversation. i believe that you will be honest with us. let me ask you today, that reasonable prospect for the united states, being able to be successful in afghanistan?
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and by that, i mean the definition's you have given earlier today. what prospects do you have for being able to depart from afghanistan, having successfully completed a mission there? >> i look at the campaign plan, i am optimistic that if we continue the equipment, we can meet our objectives. >> if that changes, will your report to the congress and the commander in chief? we need to have that. are you familiar with the article in the february 2012 armed forces journal written by colonel daniel davis expressing his concern about the performance of the afghan national army? >> i believe that i am.
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>> it is troubling, i have heard several stories by enlisted personnel that deal on a regular basis with their counterparts in the afghan army. will you commit to going below just the top commanders and will you talk, personally engaging and working with our allies in this effort? and will you be prepared to adjust your thinking about how well this effort is going if reality tells you it is not going as well as we have been hearing? >> i will recognize that any success i will have is based on the willingness to listen to the people doing the work every day.
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i pledge to you that i will get out and about and make sure that i understand the challenges, they are out there doing the work. i think my ability to do that will be with any success that we have. >> i believe that you have to do that and i am well aware that you can be in one area of the country and get one perspective , but this individual traveled 9,000 miles in more than eight provinces, dealing with these issues on a regular basis. it is a troubling report. it sounded explicit, stories of the vignettes that give insight into an afghan army that is not yet where they need to be. let me join in support of senator graham, his view on prisoners and those a threat to
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our force. it is true that they have a very difficult time maintaining people in prison for a very long time. i believe those a threat to the united states should be held in u.s. custody. they would be happy we pay for the cost and maintaining dangerous threats to their country. would you be active in insuring that we don't have this revolving door that would be detained so that they can attack us? >> if i am confirmed, absolutely personally engage in that issue. i view it as a critical force protection issue that has to be addressed for us to be successful.
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>> it is more difficult than a lot of people think. as a reservist, i have been asking about it for over a decade and i am telling you is not easy. it is hard to deal with that question. let me ask you about the defense department policy. an interesting article, the associated press just two days ago. noting that you would represent the 15 top commander since 2002. revolvingoa as a door of generals some say is a detriment. how much personal time have you had in afghanistan? >> i have not served in an
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assignment in afghanistan. i served as the component commander of the marine forces in central command for marines. i had responsibility for all of the marines assigned to iraq and afghanistan, and since 2008, all the assignments i had, there were occasions to regularly visit afghanistan. and back here in washington, to be involved in issues associated with afghanistan. >> it is a difficult thing to take any american military person away from their families and to be stationed working every hour you can possibly work. i know that it can where people
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out over time. i think we ought to think about this, mr. chairman. rotating top commanders on an annual basis makes no management cents. -- sense. there was an opinion piece on sunday in the new york times, try to imagine running a corp. by swapping senior executives every year. or imagine 1944 six months before d-day, general marshall and the supreme commander, it was time to get someone else a chance to lead. so i am a bit concerned when we have life and death situations going on, 15 commanders in this
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11-year effort. the you have any concern about that? what would you do to overcome and maintain a secure transition? >> i can tell you, as i told the chairman, as the process went on for my nomination, i had a willingness to serve until they thought was appropriate for me to come home. i recognize the need for continuity of leadership and i am willing to provide that. >> i know it can be stressful but we need to provide the commanders an opportunity to be with their families and get some time away from the stress of combat. thank you for your willingness to serve.
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we have invested a great deal. we don't need to muff it up at the end when it can be successful. and a little different tactic or policy that will allow us to be successful, and would you be frank with the secretary of defense and the president and congress? if you see needs that would make a big difference in the success of our efforts, would you bring that and fight for that, and advocate for changes that may make a difference in the course of this war? >> i would. >> the issue that you raise about frequent change in leadership is kind of a fundamental question that i think probably needs to be raised with the chairman of the joint chiefs and the secretary of defense.
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it is a very significant issue. >> thank you, mr. chairman, and for your special service to our nation. do you have a chance to personally review the reports that have been issued over the last 12 months? >> i have had an opportunity to review the reports. >> i am a broken record on this, but i am beyond a skeptic about the part of the strategy, the counterinsurgency strategy that out of thin air decided that an effective this strategy was building infrastructure in a non-secure environment. and we did 62 billion in the rack. if you have not had a chance to read the final assessment that
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occured in iraq, it is heartbreaking. the facilities that are standing empty, to say nothing of all the things that we built with those taxpayer dollars that were blown up, to say nothing of the projects that are in ruin because, frankly, an inability to maintain or sustain what we built. we are about ready to have a report like that, i believe, in afghanistan. i cannot get anyone to give me any datapoint that supports the notion that the department of the defense and even the state department, undergoing massive infrastructure projects, while we're trying to train an army, establish a police force and a rule of law, have contributed to our success.
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i would like your comments on that. >> i recognize an important part of my responsibilities will be to be a good steward of our resources. we discussed this issue with general allan. he has begun to review every single project to make sure it has achieved the desired effect. he has also canceled millions of dollars of projects that did not meet the criteria that he felt needed to be met in order to support the campaign. i can pledge to you that i will look at that issue with a matter of great importance. corruption is important, it is associated with some of the money we're spending as well. i have identified it as certainly one of the most strategic challenges and risks that we have affecting the positive outcome of the campaign. >> the other problem is that it is clear we have funded our
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enemies in some instances. it is unacceptable. let me tell you one of my problems. i would love to see the list of what has been cancelled. particularly the water and power projects. we know that the other projects will not be completed until next year, so one of the things i am frustrated about even though i have tried numerous times to get specifics, if there is money that we have admittedly cut for infrastructure funds, the fiscal year 13 projects are still not delineated. we are told because this is an agreement that happens between state and defense, but if they haven't been delineated yet, the projects are not completed. i need to be reassured that come
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2014, we don't want to get have a situation where we are withdrawing troops but leaving billions of dollars of contract work on the ground for infrastructure. particularly with what the needs are in this country. i would look forward to hearing what the projects are, and on what basis they were decided, and if there is any discussion on whether or not they are necessary. there is a tendency to just keep doing it because we have been doing it. i think it is time to do a gut check on how it relates to nation building. we can call at other things, but we are trying to nation build. it is really hard. want us to keep going forward without really doing an introspective look at how successful this part of the strategy has been.
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i don't think anybody has shown me a point that this part of the strategy can be chalked up as a success. i would look forward any information you or your team could give me on that. i want to know where our price tag is going forward, if you can get it to me for the record. we know 11.7 billion is being spent, almost $12 billion we have spent. we know that in october, the report was issued that said the afghan sustainment, they can't afford these facilities. i know that we're going have to give them money, i believe the figure is $800 million, just to sustain and maintain these facilities. what is the price tag going forward to maintain and sustain
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these facilities we have built for them? we built an army they can't afford, and what is the price tag for the united states to sustain this? >> i would have to take that for the record. >> it is an important one for us to understand as we try to figure out how we manage the money. i want to make sure that the american people know and that we know we will be called upon to fund for them, going forward, to maintain not the personnel, which is a huge price tag, but the actual facilities themselves. if you would look on that for the record, i would certainly like for anybody on your team to visit with us about the security facilities and what you intend to do in a leadership capacity to address the issues that have
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raised. i look forward to seeing you in theater. >> thank you very much for being here today, and for taking on this assignment at what is a very challenging time, both for the military and also as we look at the challenges remaining before us in afghanistan. i want to follow up a little bit on the issue that senator mack haskechaskill raised. i wonder if you can just, first of all, underline how that work is going in afghanistan and how expect to continue to
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follow-up, as commander, working in this capacity. and also, commit, if you would, to continuing to work closely to not only address the recommendations that are being made, but to talk about how that work can go forward in a way that is cooperative. >> based on my discussions, it is clear to me that they take the results of these reports very seriously. and a continuous dialogue back and forth between the staff and a special investigator for afghanistan. as a result of the previous reports, the issues that have been raised in regard to corruption and contracts, they
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change the organizational construct of providing oversight that change the organization. general allan has combined oversight with threat finance, targeting to bring together some cylinders of excellence some of the issues.roach for and knowing most importantly that ambassador cunningham, at the embassy, has taken this on and has an organization that provides oversight. i would see this as a very important role for me if i am confirmed as leader to engage in the reports, take them seriously, and have remedial action. >> the major general mentioned in an interview with the wall street journal that the military has learned a lot of lessons from the transition to a state department led mission and i
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iraq, that we are already working on preparing the changeover in afghanistan. as somebody that has spent significant time in iraq, can you talk about the lessons that we learned from that experience and what we should be thinking about as we are moving forward? >> i think one of the most important lessons the general referred to is a number of functions that have been performed by the assistance force over the past few years. it is in excess of 400 tasks performed by those headquarters. we did not start early enough to transition those tasks or identify ones that are no longer needing to be done. it is important that we work with the afghan government and our international partners as the case may be to migrate those to an appropriate place to
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sustain them through the transition in 2014. i am quite sure that is what the general was talking about. and on the twenty ninth of november, this year, here in washington, there will be a meeting between the stakeholders specifically associated with the task migration to identify where they ought to be performed, where they no longer need to be enduring. having that construct in place is quite important. >> when you say stakeholders, who is included in that group? >> that will be central command, all of our coalition partners that we represent, as well as representatives from the state department, u.s. aid and so forth. i expect a lot of energy and
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attention to be spent the next two years. >> he raised an important point talking about the various stakeholders. this remains a coalition effort, making sure that we continue to keep our other partners engaged, that is very important as somebody that chairs the european affairs subcommittee, looking at nato's role and the continued support of the european countries for our efforts in afghanistan has been very important. can you talk about the other kinds of work that you see as part of your portfolio? you take over this job in afghanistan in terms of working with nato partners to ensure their continued support for this mission? >> i would include that the most
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important partners, the afghan partners, they will have responsibility for all this work that needs to be done. one of the first things that i need to do if i am confirmed this to visit the capitals and listen to them, make sure i fully understand their plans between now and 2014, what plans they may be willing to support. i think back and forth between the capitals, they are not surprised by decisions, the key stakeholders would obviously have young men and women in harm's way. the decisions that affect the folks that are there. as we conduct the campaign, it is obviously the transition plan. working very closely with how they were redeployed, how will
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they get their equipment, and how will they do that in a way that maintains momentum, those are probably among the more important aspects of the dialogue that needs to take place. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to join my colleagues in thanking you for your service to our nation, your extraordinary service over many decades. and a service that you will be performing. i have every expectation that you will be confirmed, and i guess that might be the bad news for you in some ways. but again, your tremendous service to this country. many of the questions have been asked and answered so i will not repeat them, but there is one
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area i have been concerned, other areas of the committee, that is the effort to counter the ied explosive devices that are the predominant or major cause of casualties to our men and women in uniform. i am wondering if you can suggest equipment or efforts to work with pakistan, which is still the source of the ingredients and he would contemplate taking in this new position? >> is still remains the largest producer in afghanistan, an issue that clearly i need to be
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decisively engaged in. you alluded to pakistan in your question and that is the number one area we need to make -- i am encouraged by recent progress and development with the coordination of the border. i believe that pakistan also has a challenge moving back and forth into pakistan as well as back to afghanistan. we discussed border issues between afghanistan, the coalition in pakistan. in the next two weeks, we will sign the operating procedures associated with that agreement.
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the level had some successful discussions, there is a working group. and most importantly at the coordination centers, we are starting to see some development. pakistan had not built the coordination centers that they are due to build as a result of that agreement. we look forward to doing that. if i am confirmed, a healthy and consistent dialogue with pakistan is going to be very important to address the border area. that is one of the key things we can do as a result of the generosity to address the ied threat. the border, coming up with a mutual framework to make sure that we eliminate the amount of materials coming in to build ied's. >> are you satisfied that there is a commitment to stopping
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the transfer of those materials? >> i can't comment on the level of commitment from personal observation, but i will tell you i am not satisfied with the results. >> i join you in that you and i think other members of the committee and the congress will as well. and we hope that your purse ways with -- persuasive efforts are persuasive to the pakistani. in the draw-down of troops from afghanistan, i hope the remaining equipment necessary is detect and counter ied's kept in place and not withdrawn. >> that is part of the process.
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>> the kinds of new equipment that may be necessary to protect our troops from roadside bombs, is that -- is that being provided? the new iterations, the new models of equipment, protective gear and other kinds of equipment still being provided? >> as long as we have men and women and harm's way we need to continue to adapt. that is what we will do. >> i have one more area i would like to cover. in terms of human trafficing, senator portman and i yesterday announced a caucus to end at him and trafficking. there is an amendment we have
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proposed that will provide new tools and penalties against use of traffic labor by contractors who work for the federal government. use of taxpayer dollars on projects that involve slave labor. i think there is no other way to put it. i wonder if you have any thoughts regarding the oversight and prevention of human trafficking among u.s. contractors that you would carry out if he were confirmed for this position. >> i have seen some initial reports on human trafficking. i understand why you would be introducing legislation in that regard. if i am confirmed i will do what i can to help mitigate, working closely with ambassador in kabul. >> thank you very much. >> i commend you on your human
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trafficking initiative. you have described it progress. you have given us some cautious optimism. some real optimism about the ability to achieve our mission in afghanistan. i have seen progress with my own eyes. i happen to share your assessment of the progress which has been made and the reasons that you give -- the evidence that you give for your conclusion. i think that evidence is very much present. the challenges you have described are also there. i do not think our media has given an accurate overview of the situation in afghanistan because basically there has been an appropriate focus on problems and shortfalls.
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there has been appropriate reporting. there has been inadequate reporting on the progress made in afghanistan. people probably have a more negative view on prospects of afghanistan and the people in afghanistan have. if that is true, that is the product of a free press. i will not ever complained about a free press in the united states. if you're on these continue after you get there, if you find ways to present the positives so that it is not such a concentration in our media on the negatives. it will be a government that will continue to have
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corruption. it will be a military that will continue to have shortfalls, particularly the enablers and also in terms of people who turn on their own and turn on us. that will continue hopefully at a significantly reduced level. there will be those examples. i hope you would be aware what is presented to our public. i do not want anything shaped. i am not suggesting to anybody that you tried to engage in propaganda because that is not what we are looking for. we are looking for a balanced presentation of the pluses and minuses and it has not been accurate from what i have seen with my own eyes and terms of a balanced media presentation of
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the situation in afghanistan. it is better than the average american thinks it is. i think that is in large measure because it is better than a cross section of media presentation in this country. i think you ought to be aware of the importance that whatever the objective situation is in afghanistan that it be fairly presented to our own people. we very much appreciate your direct answers here today. we always appreciate the kind of testimony which you have given, which is clear, which is direct. you have spoken some truth to power right here this morning. frankly, that is always welcome. it better be welcome in a
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democratic government that we hear directly from. people who testify in front of us, what their opinions are, if you have given us those this morning. the objective now is to try to get your nomination voted on by this committee. i would hope we could do that as soon as -- i believe the situation on the floor is we will have votes the day that we come back from our -- whatever the thanksgiving break is. i would hope we could bring that up on that day and get this to the floor of the senate so that we could have you in place with whatever the future might hold. whatever the exact transition or the change of the guard is. i think it is currently planned for late january or early february. is that correct that you will
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take over from general allan? >> my understanding is early february. >> i share the positive comments about general allan. there have been some statements made about his being a fine soldier. i am hoping he can stay in that position until the planned date for his departure. i have also seen firsthand his extra incompetence and capability. i also have confidence in am similar to what has been expressed by colleagues this morning. i am very confident you will be overwhelmingly and unanimously
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confirmed it. i see no reason you would not be. we give thanks to you and your wife who is with you here this morning. we know how important families are. that has been expressed by all of us. we are sincere in that. i think spouses are aware of our sincerity because we try to reflect the view in our legislation about the importance of families in various ways. including the health care that is provided for families. we hope it always reflects our rhetoric in our legislation. with that, again with our thanks to you and your family, we will stand adjourned. >> thank you.
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>> do you know when you will hear from alan on his recommendation coming forward? i know working within the administration -- >> i was a little surprised. >> it was my understanding it was supposed to be done by the end of the year. >> he would no more than i would. my recollection -- my recollection was the end of the year.
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>> are you convinced there was a national security compromise? >> i have not seen evidence of it. >> going to be briefed. >> really surprised he said he had not been directly involved in the consideration of the move it forward? why would two be? if he is going to be executing the plan, would he not want to be involved? >> he is not going to be the one making the recommendations. under the current plan, that decision will have been made. i would suspect he would be briefed under reason for it. i did not see him participating in it. he may be put in a position of
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taking steps prior to confirmation, which he is not allowed to take it. he can observe it. he is not supposed to participate. >> did you get any sense of the texture for the composition of post 2014 u.s. involvement in afghanistan? >> i think he inferred there will be involvement in some areas. in terms of enablers and special ops. he had mentioned intelligence. he did not say anything that surprised me. >> your reason for supporting the 352 number post 2014. are you concerned that you lose the deterrent part of that?
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is the lower number less than the deterrent? is that the crux of your concern? >> i do not think we want to send out a message that we are going to reduce the security capability of that army after we leave. that is not the message i would want to send. after we leave, if we are less considerate of the security situation, that is a bad message. no. 2, it is not true. we are going to be concerned and cautious and careful about the security situation after relieve. it is imperative with what we have invested in afghanistan to the cost to us of having a larger number of forces there, post 2014 compared to having the
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larger afghan army. it makes a lot of sense. what's your spending something like $3 billion a month there now. >> it is more than that. >> but compared to 4 billion per year bursa's what we spend per month. -- compared to what we spend this month. >> assuming we can finish it the first week we are back, i would expect we would go immediately to conference. >> are you expecting any major hiccups there? >> i do not want to predict on that. i have not yet got a report from staff as to their discussions with the house staff to try to
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reach the long list of recommendations. they would be making a recommendation to us, us being the counterparts in the house. they would be making recommendations to us on how to resolve hundreds of differences. once they cannot make recommendations -- i have not been briefed yet. the most general way as they think it is going well. if there are tenor 15 or 20 issues that they cannot make a recommendation on, they cannot make a choice recommendation. >> you expect senate passage of your bill by when? >> i expect senate to hopefully take it up maybe today or tomorrow morning, actually.
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that is possible. i am hoping we can make opening statements, maybe even resolve amendments that we were able to clear and go immediately to it on our return, which i assume is monday. go right to it. this is the hope. have an amendment that is identified and the unanimous consent agreement is the first amendment we would go to. we have a suggestion to leaders on what that amendment would be. identify even the second amendment after the deposition of the first amendment so we would have it all laid out today. i would hope -- we think we can get this bill and three days if we have cooperation from our members. >> have you given any indication on how long it will take to go through the allen inquiry and
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when that might be back and enter your core? you have a goal on when you would like to have a hearing? -- >> attorney general eric holder announces the details of a settlement from bp oil. ed markey reacts to the settlement. president obama touring hurricanes and the damage in new york. the federalist society hosts the national lawyers convention friday. the topic is the future of u.s. constitutional law in the supreme court. we will be live with mike lee at 2:15 eastern on c-span 2.
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ted cruz from the same conference. >> c-span invites middle and high school students to send a message to the president. but president obama know what is the most important issue he should continue in 2014 for a chance to win again -- a grand prize of $5,000. it is open for students in grades 6-12 a. go online to studentcam.org. >> the deep water horizon rig explosion led to the worst oil spill. eric holder announced a historic $4.5 billion settlement in the case. a grand jury returned indictments charging two
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supervisors. this briefing as half of an hour. >> good afternoon. i'm here with the assistant attorney general from the justice department and the security and exchange commission of enforce. and head of deep water verizon task force and announcing the latest step forward in our ongoing efforts to achieve justice for those whose lives and livelihoods were impacted by the largest environmental disaster in the history of the united states. and to hold accountable those bore responsibility for this tragedy.
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today in united states state district court here in louisiana in new orleans the department filed a 14 count information charging b.p. with eleven counts of felony manslaughter. one count of felony obstruction of justice and violations of the clean water and migratory bird treaty acts in connection with the deep water horizon oil spill that began in april of 2010. b.p. has agreed to plead guilty to all 14 criminal charges including responsibility for the deaths of eleven people and the events that led to an unprecedented environmental catastrophe. the company has also agreed to pay $4 billion in fines understand penalties. this marks both the largest single criminal fine, more than $1.25 billion and the largest total criminal resolution $4 billion in the history of the united states.
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tos stands as a testament the hard work countless investigators, attorneys, support staff members and other persons from the deep water horizon task force and state and local agencies who have worked to advance a complex and wide ranging investigation that began even before the oil well was capped. and it constitutes a major environmental achievement of fulfilling a promise that i made here in new orleans along with my colleagues nearly two years ago to engage with our partners and count parts to determine the cause of this disaster, to respond it's consequences and seek justice on behalf of the victims and to enable gulf residents to recover and rebuild. to this end, under the terms of the agreement we announced today about $2.4 billion of the funds will be dedicated to
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environmental restoration preservation and conservation efforts throughout this region including barrier island creation right here in louisiana. an additional $350 million will aid in the development of state of the art oil spill prevention and response technologies, education research and training. and more than $1 billion will go to the united states coast guard trust fund to be available for clean up and compensation for those affected by oil spills in the gulf and throughout the united states. now as part of its guilty plea b.p. will retain a monitor for four years who will oversee safety and maintenance in regard to drilling in the gulf as well as an independent auditor who will conduct annual reviews to ensure compliance with the terms of this agreement. the company will hire an ethics monitor to improve it's its conduct and foster robust
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cooperation with the government. now there can be no question that this historic announcement is a critical step forward and under scores the justice determination to stand with gulf coast communities. in february the settlement tote ling $90 million related to the company's clean water act liability for the deep water horizon disaster. and approximately $45 million of this total will go directly to the gulf in the form of penalties. but our work is far from over. in the trips that my colleagues and that i have made to the gulf coast since the spill, we have seen the damage to lives
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and businesses as well as to coastal areas and wetlands that this tragedy has inflicted. we understand the tremendous cost both economic and environmental that have been associated with this disaster and we've been inspired by the resilience displayed by each gulf coast resident who has been affected. that's why i want to be absolutely clear that today's resolution does not mark the end of our efforts. in fact our criminal investigation remains ongoing and we will continue to follow all credible leads and pursue any charges that are warranted. in addition to the charges filed against b.p. a federal grand jury has also returned an indictment regarding the two highest ranking b.p. supervisors who were on board on the day of the explosion with 23 criminal accounts, including eleven counts of manslaughter. eleven counts of involuntary
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manslaughter and alleged violations of the clean water act. the grand jury has also charged a former b.p. who served as a deputy incident commander and b.p.'s second highest ranking employee at has charged him from hiding information from congress and allegedly lying to law enforcement officials. these and other matters remain open including a separate civil action pending in federal court here in new orleans. we are looking forward to the trial which is scheduled to begin in february of next year which we intend to prove that b.p. was grossly neglect in causing the oil spill. we are seeking civil penalties and a judgment that b.p. is liable for cost and natural resource damages that could amount to billions of dollars. but we have been unable to
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resolve the civil case. we remain as determined as ever to hold those responsibility accountable. in addition to my colleagues we are firmly committed to combating fraud by investigating and prosecuting those who attempt to gain profits at a terrible tragedy. i want to thank the leaders local officials and agency partners and gulf coast residents who have contributed to this work and have made this announcement possible. i'd like to turn this over to the assistant attorney general of the criminal division who will provide additional details about today's action. >> thank you mr. attorney general. in april of 2010 the nation witnessed an unimaginable tragedy when the deep water
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horizon oil rig exploded in the gulf of mexico. eleven people aboard the rig died which and there began and oil began at that point pouring out of the well and on to the sea floor for months causing immense damage to the gulf region and to our ecosystem. the communities here in new orleans and around the gulf have waited patiently for justice to be done. today their wait is over. the deep water horizon task fours filed a 14 count information and guilty plea agreement in new orleans federal court earlier today. it charges b.p. exploration and production with eleven counts of felony manslaughter,
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violations of environmental laws including the clean water act and the migratory bird act and obstruction of congress. b.p. has agreed to plead guilty to each of those 14 counts and to pay the highest criminal fine in united states history. perhaps the greatest tragedy is that the deaths of the eleven men on board the deep water horizon could have been avoided t. explosion of the rig was a disaster that resulted from their culture of privileging profit over prudence and we allege that the senior members on board the rig negligently caused the explosion. we hope the acknowledgment of b.p. of its misconduct to plead guilty to eleven counts of felony manslaughter brings some measure of justice to the family members of the people who died on the rig. as the oil spill continued b.p. made a tragic situation worse.
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they began misleading congress and the american people about how much oil was pouring out of the well. as b.p. now admits in responding to congress t company lied and with held documents in order to make it seem as though the oil was spilling, that less damage was being done to the environment than in fact was really occurring. acknowledging those lies, b.p. has agreed to plead guilty to felony obstruction of congress. make no mistake. while the company is guilty, individuals committed these crimes. and we have also unsealed today a 23 count indictment charging b.p.'s two highest ranking supervisors aboard the deep water horizon with manslaughter and violation of the clean water act. the indictment charges the two
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b.p. well site leaders with negligent and gross negligence on 2010. the red flags indicating that the well was not secure both men failed to take appropriate action to prevent the blow out. a separate indictment was also unsealed today charging a former senior b.p. expect sive with obstruction of a investigation and making false statements to law enforcement officials. the indictment alleges that he on behalf of b.p. intentionally under estimated the amount of oil flowing from the well. he allegedly cherry picked pages from documents, with held other documents al together and lied to congress and others to make this spill appear less catastrophic than it was. the attorney general stood near here with didn't officials when
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he first opened this criminal investigation into this terrible oil spill. and promised that we would thoroughly investigate and hold to account those responsibility for this horrible tragedy. today we've begun doing exactly that and tomorrow and in the months to come the deep water horizon task force will continue to tire leslie pursue justice in this matter. i'd like to personally thank task force director john beretta who has done an absolutely remarkable job in leading this investigation as well as the many fine prosecutors from the criminal division, the environment and natural resources division, the u.s. attorney community and the many talented federal and state law enforcement agents who have
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worked so hard for so long to develop these cases. i would like to thank our colleagues at the securities and exchange commission for their important parallel investigation. with that i would like to turn it over now to my friend and colleague, the director of enforcement at the f.c.c. thank you. >> thank you. i'm director of enforcement at the f.c.c. today we are announcing that b.p. has agreed to pay more than a half billion dollars that it misled investigators about the rate of oil flowing during the deep water horizon disaster. the $525 million penalty represents the third largest civil penalty ever assessed and those funds will be used to compensate harmed investors for losses sustained from this fraud. b.p. misrepresented in f.c.c. filings that the oil spill flow
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rate was estimated to be up to 5,000 barrels of oil per day and that was the current estimate. in fact b.p. was in position of numerous analysis where 5,000 was at the lowest end of the range and those same analysis had upper ranges that were many multiples of 5,000 barrels. according to our complaint b.p. executives made public statements in which they stood behind the flow rate of 5,000 barrels despite an ever growing body of evidence that the estimate was unreasonably low. they dismissed higher estimates reached by third party scientist and they realized it was nearly ten times the amount that b.p. estimated. the spill and concealment of the truth by b.p. caused devastating loss to the victims and environment and under mined the truth seeking function of
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congress. and by hiding the severity of the spill b.p. caused another type of harm that is our focus. harm to the shareholders, to the investing public and market all of which are entitled to transparent and complete and accurate information. the eyes of the world were on b.p. in the spring and summer of 2010, the company had an opportunity to provide accurate disclosure about the facts needed by the public to make informed decision about investment and they chose to mislead the public.
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that is not what we expect from public companies and their management and it is in times of congress the need for accurate information is most acute. i want to recognize the hard work of the f.c.c. staff that conducted this investigation including brian thomas and mat ralph. they are the kind of public servants that americans can be proud of. i want to thank the members of the deep water horizon task force. and i want to thank the leadership of the department of justice, the attorney general, associate attorney general for their leadership in this investigation. thank you. >> we'll be glad to respond to any questions you might have. \[inaudible] >> let me answer that and i'll turn it to the associate attorney general who has been responsible there. we have been in negotiations with b.p. we have not reached a number that i considered satisfactory
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in order to resolve those civil claims that we have. we have a trial set for february. we are planning to vigorously enforce our complaint at the. there is the possibility i suppose that further negotiations could result in a resolution. >> the only thing i would add is just that the attorney general has said repeatedly b.p. is exposed to billions of dollars for the harm that they have caused to gulf coast and the region and we are prepared to take that case to trial and vigorously pursue our civil case. >> is there a difference in the penalty per barrel spilled when you go with a negligent standard or gross negligent standard? >> the distinction is applicable on one side and you have $1100 per barrel penalty.
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that gets up to $45e00 per barrel and the standard of law is the difference between violating a duty of care and wanton and reckless conduct. >> what does this settlement mean for the families of those who died and for all of those who have been impacted by this oil spill? >> those lives are irreplaceable and there is nothing we can do to bring those loved ones back. on the other hand this is an indication and perhaps a vindication that we have shown and the company has admitted that as a result of their actions people died there unnecessarily, manslaughter. manslaughter has been charged
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and manslaughter has been pled to. i would hope that would bring some degree of comfort by way of explanation as to why those brave people lost their lives. but at the end of the day, we can't bring them back and i think what we can certainly glean from what has happened here in terms of what we have charged and what the company pled to is those deaths were unnecessary. >> are any of those fines tax deductible? >> they are not. the attorney general was clear that nothing in the criminal settlement could be tax deductible nor an offset to any further civil resolution and that was a very explicit term of the agreement at the request of the attorney general. >> mr. attorney general you said the criminal investigation is ongoing s. that possible that other b.p. employees or executives will be charged in the future. >> it's an ongoing
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investigation, that's exactly right. >> this doesn't clear b.p. employees? >> all i will say today is we've resolved it with the company and we've charged three individuals and we have an ongoing investigation. >> mr. holder, we keep hearing about the historic nature of these criminal penalties but we heard the same thing pretty much 7 years ago. it seems like environmental cases of this nature fall like nfl passing records. what deterrent do you expect this to have in the fine you announced today? >> you have to understand the totality of what we announced today. there are penalties historic in nature. a company has pled guilty to criminal felony charges, manslaughter. individuals have been charged as well. everything that we are capable of doing in the criminal sphere we have done today.
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and this is unprecedented both with regard to the amount of money, the fact that a company has been criminally charged and individuals have been charged as well. and as lanny brewer indicated the criminal investigation is ongoing. i hope this sends a clear message to those who would engage in this conduct that there will be a significant penalty to pay and individuals who are engaged in these kind of activities will be held responsible. this is not a corporate plea. individuals have been charged. >> mr. attorney general, do you have anything to say about a senior prosecutor resigning and another demoted because they were making comments about ongoing cases in their offices on the internet. >> i am aware of those charges. i've seen the press reports but i don't think it would be appropriate for me to comment
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beyond that. >> are you confident that this will change that culture at b.p. that was present at the time of the explosion? >> i am optimistic that it will. i would hope that it will. there is a monitor in place to ensure that in fact that culture does change. i think that the company must be given some credit for the way in which they did respond to the spill in putting together that $20 billion fund and the amounts of money they have expended to fund restoration. so that is an indication that the contract mind set has changed but there are mechanisms in place to ensure that changes something that infuses, that changes a culture the corporation. >> could you address how this guilty plea today affects the ongoing civil litigation and the determination whether this is gross negligence.
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will this be a factor and have you discussed with b.p. whether this money they will be paying under this agreement actually comes out of the pool they are planning to make available? >> so two things. first of all, clearly the session of this plea can't did under stated and it will have an impact on the ongoing civil case we're pursuing. we have in our complaint alleged gloss negligence on the part of b.p. and we feel strongly that we'll be able to prove that case when it's up for trial in february. in terms of the impact on any potential civil recovery, that in part is a determination that a court will make but i think something that the assistant attorney general said is very significant and that is that no part of the $4 billion dollars that b.p. has agreed to pay today will be used to offset any
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future civil recoveries that will go to restoration of the gulf coast. [indiscernible] >> those investigations are ongoing so we aren't going to speak about that. >> can you give us a state by state breakdown of how much money goes to the state particularly alabama in this case? >> there is a chart here which kind of ill straits a lot of. this i think the first point and the attorney general made this point one reason this is such a historic result is the vast majority of this recovery is going back to the gulf coast, back to the gulf coast states. as you all know the restore act does not govern criminal penalties so it doesn't govern how our penalties are apportioned in this case but we did look to the restore act as a rough guide to apportion what
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each state would receive under this criminal resolution. so roughly the amount of money is roughly a portioned equally amongst louisiana and the other states. have you significant additional amount of funds which will be devoted to restoration, barrier island creation and mississippi river diversion which you find in the louisiana master plan. >> the way in which this money has been apportioned is not the way we typically apportion money at the end of a case like this. we have tried to be sensitive to that which congress has expressed in the passage of the restore act. i spoke earlier today to senator landrieu and congressman bonner and senator nelson as well to tell them about what we have done with regard to the
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distribution of the moneys in connection with this settlement today. >> if we could have three answers to the same question because the attorney general and the associate wanted to -- you should focus on it is the largest criminal resolution ever and it's his tor rick that all of the money will go to the benefit of the gulf states. that is very unusual for a criminal resolution. it's a criminal fine and punitive. but nonetheless it's going to the different states, particularly to louisiana. >> i want to ask you about how do we get here but in terms of the government what are you doing internally to make sure this doesn't happen again. how ered?it be monit
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>> so one of the important features of this resolution is about $350 million will be given to the national academy of sciences in an endowment. and the purpose of that is to improve our oil response, oil spill response, improve drilling safety measures. i think if there is anything we've learned from this great tragedy is we can improve the way we respond to oil spills and drilling safety in the gulf and throughout the country. and $350 million of this resolution goes just to that. >> can you address how the decision was made by the justice department to -- how and when it was made to inform president obama of the investigation of the c.i.a. director. >> with regard to that issue what we did was duct investigation in the way we normally conduct a criminal investigation. we do so in a way that so they
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can be seen as being done in an impartial way which we follow the facts. we do not share outside the justice department, outside the f.b.i. the facts of ongoing investigations. we made the determination as we were going through the matter that there was not a threat to national security. had we made the determination that a threat to national security existed, we would, of course, had made that known to the president and also to the appropriate members on the hill. but as we went through the investigation, looked at the facts and tried to examine them as they developed, we were very -- we felt e very secure in the knowledge that a national security threat did not exist that warranted the sharing of that information with the white house or the hill. but when we got to a point in the investigation and it was very late in the investigation after a very critical interview
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occurred on the friday before we made that disclosure, when we got to that point when we thought it was appropriate to share the information, we did so. >> thank you. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] >>henry waxman held a news conference. this is 20 minutes. >> today bp reached an
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agreement with the justice department to resolve all criminal claims against it by the united states government regarding the bp deepwater horizon disaster and to pay $4 billion in criminal penalties for these very serious violations of law. bp has pled guilty to 11 felony counts related to the tragic death of 11 men who were working on the deepwater horizon rig. the company also has pled guilty to violations of the clean water act and the migratory bird treaty act. finally, bp has pled guilty to obstruction of congress for lying to me, for lying to henry waxman and the other members of congress about the amount of oil that was flowing out of the well. bp lied to me. they lied to the people of the gulf. they lied to their shareholders.
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they lied to all americans. there should be no more argument. bp is guilty of negligence and grossly negligent conduct that resulted in the 11 deaths. bp is guilty of action that harmed the water and wildlife of the gulf of mexico. bp is guilty of lying to the congress about what they had done and what they knew. in today's plea agreement, bp has admitted that former bp executive david rainey lied to me and to the other members of the house energy and commerce committee subcommittee on energy and environment. he's testified may 4, 2010, at a closed-door said giving the briefing on the bp spill. he was apparently responsible for other information
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subsequently provided to the subcommittee about the size of the spill. according to the plea agreement, and i quote, "as part of this plea agreement, bp has admitted that, throughout rainey, it withheld documents and provided false and misleading information in response to the united states house of representatives request for full rate information. among other things, bp admitted that he manipulated internal estimates to understate the amount of oil flowing from the well and withheld data that contradicted bp's public estimate of 5,000 barrels per day. bp has also admitted that, at the same time rainey was preparing his manipulated estimates, bp's internal engineering response teams were using methods that generated significantly higher estimates. the flow rate technical group
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later concluded that more than 60,000 barrels per day were leaking into the gulf during the relevant time, contrary to bp's representations' to congress." at the time that bp was providing congress with a lowball estimate that the flow rate was 5,000 barrels per day, the company apparently had internal information that contradicted that estimate. they knew it could be many multiples greater than that. it turned out to be wrong by at least a factor of 10. these higher estimates were not provided to the congress, nor did bp ever correct the misleading information that they withheld from the subcommittee.
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in the course of their investigation into bp's misdeeds, the fbi and the justice department uncovered internal documents that apparently made it clear that mr. rainey and his colleagues knew that the likely flow rate was significantly higher than what congress had been told. today, i am making public a copy of the documents which i provided to the justice department in response to their request for information regarding our bp investigation. at the time that the disaster was occurring, i said that i thought that bp was either lying about the flow rate or that they were incompetent. today, we have confirmation that bp was both incompetent and that it was lying to the congress. today, the company is taking the first step towards making
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restitution for its misdeeds by pleading guilty to its criminal misconduct regarding the deepwater horizon disaster. i want to commend the attorney general holder and the fbi for their excellent work in bringing the u.s. government's criminal case to a successful resolution. i would urge bp to expeditiously resolve the remaining civil complaints against it, including dropping their misguided attempt to contest the amount of oil that they are responsible for spilling into the gulf of mexico. regarding the allocation of the penalties, the portion of today's settlement directing
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significant funding for preservation and conservation of natural resources along the gulf coast is a significant step forward in repairing the unprecedented environmental harm caused by the bp spill. revenue from future civil penalties will go to the gulf states directly. dedicating these criminal penalties to conservation efforts by the nonprofit fish and wildlife foundation in scientific research conducted by the national academy of sciences -- and scientific research conducted by the national academy of sciences is a critical step in healing our gulf coast. 11 americans died, then bp lied, then they tried to cover it up. they deserve this record picking penalty. let me turn -- record-breaking penalty. let me turn and recognize chairman waxman. >> thank you, ed markey. this justice department announcement today is the largest criminal resolution in the u.s. history, against bp for its role in the 20-2010
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deepwater horizon explosion and the subsequent bill -- for its role in the 2010 deepwater horizon explosion and the subsequent spill. bp pled guilty to 11 counts of culinary -- felony manslaughter, one count of obstruction -- 11 felony manslaughter counts, one count of obstruction of congress, which we take very seriously as members of congress. violations of the clean water act, the migratory bird treaty act -- the company will pay $4 billion in fines and penalties. in addition to bp's supervisors on board the deepwater horizon the day of the explosion, they were stars with 11 felony counts of -- they were charged with 11 counts of sseamen's -- seamen's manslaughter and other charges. our committee worked tirelessly
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to uncover the truth behind what happened at the deepwater horizon the night of april 20, 2010. our investigation revealed that our investigation revealed that bp and other companies involved in drilling the macondo well made a series of key decisions that led to this horrible incident. we learned that bp made choices about how to drill and finished well -- and finish the well that significantly increased the chances of a block. these decisions were made to save money and time with little regard to safety. the company put profits ahead of safety. the results were catastrophic. the blowout was preventable. it happened because bp made a series of reckless decisions. series of reckless decisions.